Life Advocacy Briefing

April 28, 2014

Abortion’s Hidden Subsidy / Not One Cent for Abortion
Mississippi Bans Post-20-Week Abortions / The Davis Slide
Alabama Court States the Obvious / More Progress in the States
Weak Demand? / ‘Essential’ ‘Service’? / Get Serious Now!

Abortion’s Hidden Subsidy

THINK THE HYDE AMENDMENT BARS ALL FEDERAL SUBSIDIES FOR ABORTION? Think again. As valuable – and cherished – as the Hyde Amendment is, it is not permanent law; it is an annually renewed protection in the annual spending bill for the Departments of Labor, Education and Health & Human Services, notes Calvin Freiburger at So “it doesn’t apply to subsidies directly appropriated by acts of Congress or otherwise unconnected” to those departments. (Other amendments – often hotly contested by abortion partisans in Congress – must be adopted each year to block taxpayer funding of abortion in such federal appropriations as provide for foreign aid, federal prisons or the military, for example.)

But a further federal subsidy for abortion was highlighted in mid-April, notes Mr. Freiburger, by “the Washington Examiner’s Ashe Schow,” who listed “several surprising activities that are included among tax-deductible expenses” in IRS policy, “including the following: ‘Have an abortion, get a tax deduction!’,” writes Ms. Schow. “‘How strange that pro-abortion advocates aren’t using this as a selling point. Hmmm.

“‘Oh, and while they hyperventilate over Hobby Lobby not wanting to provide every type of birth control without a co-pay, it turns out,’” reports Ms. Schow, quoted by Mr. Freiburger, “‘that birth control pills can be deducted if prescribed by a doctor.’ …

“Specifically, the Internal Revenue Service’s list of tax-deductible medical expenses says,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “‘You can include in medical expenses the amount you pay for a legal abortion.’ And: ‘You can include in medical expenses the amount you pay for birth control pills prescribed by a doctor.’”

Appropriated or not, ObamaCare or not, this is a federal abortion subsidy, and while our Congressional representatives are focused on IRS abuses on the one hand and tax policy on the other, the time has come for American taxpayers to ask their public officials to put an end to these subsidies for the abortion cartel.


Not One Cent for Abortion

GEORGIA GOV. NATHAN DEAL (R) HAS SIGNED legislation prohibiting taxpayer funding of abortion insurance coverage. Georgia Right to Life explains in a news release, “The new law prevents public monies from being spent on abortion services in any of the insurance plans offered under ObamaCare or through state employee health plans.” The new law’s only exception is for abortions necessary to save the life of the mother. GRtL calls the legislation “one of the strongest [such] laws in the nation” and commends the governor, a former Member of Congress, as “solidly pro-life.”

Georgia is “the 25th state,” notes the release, “to adopt a law stopping taxpayer funding of abortion through ObamaCare. ‘Georgia is solidly pro-life,’” commented GRtL executive director Genevieve Wilson in the release, “‘and bringing a halt to publicly funding this horrific practice is long overdue.’”


Mississippi Bans Post-20-Week Abortions

MISSISSIPPI GOV. PHIL BRYANT (R) HAS SIGNED LEISLATION “limiting abortions at five months of pregnancy,” reports Americans United for Life in an AUL news release, “when the procedure becomes extremely dangerous to the woman’s life.”

The new law passed the Mississippi House by a vote of 90 to 21 and the state Senate 41 to 10 and was “substantially based on AUL model legislation,” notes the release, “developed with a mother-child focus that addresses the health risks of abortion for women as well as the pain felt by the unborn child.

“‘We know that with each passing week of pregnancy, the health risks of abortion increase,’” said AUL president Charmaine Yoest PhD in the release. “‘A woman seeking an abortion at 20 weeks,’” she warned, “‘is 35 times more likely to die from abortion than she was in the first trimester. At 21 weeks or more, she is 91 times more likely to die from abortion than she was in the first trimester.’”

And of course, for the targeted baby, the death rate is very nearly 100% regardless of the baby’s gestational age. A baby aborted at age 20 weeks or older, medical science has concluded, experiences excruciating pain in advance of the death. For many nominally committed, self-described “pro-choice” voters, learning about the pain penetrates their consciences regardless of whether those consciences have been hoodwinked by the abortion industry’s standard “blob-of-tissue” hoax. 

The Davis Slide

A MID-APRIL POLL OF TEXAS VOTERS shows that State Sen. Wendy Davis, darling of the abortion lobby and nationally celebrated Democratic candidate for Governor in 2014, is trailing her chief competitor, Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott, “by nearly 10 points among women,” reports Kirsten Andersen for, “with 11% of women still undecided.”

Commented respected GOP pollster Kellyanne Conway, quoted by Ms. Andersen from a Daily Caller interview: “‘Women get exhausted with women candidates who say they are pro-woman and then run on issues that real women don’t say are most important to them.’”

Public Policy Polling president Dean Debnam, reports Ms. Andersen, noted GOP Gov. Rick Perry’s increased popularity as a possible drawback for Sen. Davis, even though he is not her opponent; clearly, the two have been seen as sparring over abortion.

“‘[Gov.] Perry’s net approval has improved 18 points from where it was two years ago,’” commented Mr. Debnam, quoted by Ms. Andersen, who notes, “During those two years, [Gov.] Perry has pushed for the passage of some of the most pro-life legislation in the nation, including the bill that launched [Ms.] Davis to fame.

“[Sen.] Davis became a national hero to abortion advocates,” notes Ms. Andersen, “after filibustering [Mr.] Perry’s proposal to ban abortions after 20 weeks, tighten safety restrictions at abortion facilities to match those of other surgical centers and mandate that medical abortions follow the FDA-approved method for administering RU-486.”

Fact is, real women don’t want unregulated abortions. The slide of Wendy Davis ought to be an instructive episode in the political war over what liberals call “reproductive rights” but what intelligent observers understand is the decriminalization-by-judicial-fiat of a massive criminal enterprise. 

Alabama Court States the Obvious

THE ALABAMA SUPREME COURT ASSERTED STATE SOVEREIGNTY last week, declaring, writes Heather Clark for, “that state child protection laws include the unborn, reinforcing the court’s declaration that children in the womb are entitled to the right to life.”

It was an 8-to-1 decision in a case where a mother was charged with chemical endangerment of her unborn child; the mother had ingested cocaine during her pregnancy, shown by drug testing of her newborn. The ruling reinforces one handed down by the Alabama Supreme Court in 2013, also in cases where mothers were charged for ingesting illegal drugs during pregnancy.

Writing the opinion for the court majority was Justice Tom Parker, who wrote, reports Ms. Clark, “‘[F]rom the child’s earliest stages of development, the existence of an unborn child is separate from that of its mother. … Accordingly,’” he wrote, “‘Alabama has an interest not only in promoting a sustainable society and culture that appreciates life but also in securing the blessings of liberty by protecting the right to life inherent in the new life itself.’”

Chief Justice Roy Moore “wrote a concurring opinion,” reports Ms. Clark, “remarking that man’s law can never override God’s law, including regarding the right to life. ‘God, not governments and legislatures, gives persons these inherent natural rights,’ he stated. ‘Government, in fact, has no power to abridge or destroy natural rights God directly besets [sic] to mankind and indeed no power to contravene what God declares right or wrong. As the gift of God,’” Justice Moore continued, reports Ms. Clark, “‘this right to life is not subject to violation by another’s unilateral choice. From local to international, all law flows from the divine source: it is the law of God.’”

Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel was quick to applaud the ruling, Ms. Clark reports. “‘The opinions by Chief Justice Moore and Tom Parker are well-reasoned,’” he said in the Christian News report, “‘grounded in history and rational law and completely demolish the fallacies of the US Supreme Court’s abortion decisions. … One day soon,’” he predicted, quoted by Ms. Clark, “‘the United States Supreme Court’s abortion opinions will come toppling down like a house of cards. Then we will look back at history like we now do with Nazi Germany and wonder why our generation was so blind to the personhood of the preborn child.’”


More Progress in the States


Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell (R) signed a law tightening the state’s Medicaid abortion ban, clarifying that the law’s “medically necessary” exception applies only to physical necessity so that the loophole can no longer be used to subsidize abortions committed for “mental health” reasons. Explains Family Research Council president Tony Perkins in his April 21 Washington Update, “Too often, clinics try to find loopholes around state laws by claiming an abortion was necessary to protect the mother’s health – when in reality, only a small fraction of those patients (some estimate 4%) need the abortion for legitimate medical reasons.” The new law, he opines, “should drastically cut down on the system’s abuse.”

Arizona’s newest pro-life law, signed by GOP Gov. Jan Brewer, does away with a rule requiring health officials to secure a warrant before inspecting an abortuary unannounced. “In passing the bill,” reports Mr. Perkins, “Arizona becomes the 10th state to allow for spot inspections of clinics that, in most places, are less regulated than tanning salons.”


Weak Demand?

THOUGH PLANNED PARENTHOOD OF HAWAII HAS BEEN OPEN FOR BUSINESS on Kauai only on Fridays, the outfit is closing its Kauai shop down completely after just two years of “service,” reports Tom Hasslinger, managing editor of “Officials didn’t specify why it was closing the office,” he writes.

The report quotes the outfit’s state president, Andrea Anderson, vowing to “expand [Planned Parenthood’s] educational outreach on the island,” particularly targeting youth.  Ms. Anderson adds, according to Mr. Hasslinger, “‘We continue to fine-tune our business model and remain confident that our Kauai health center will reopen in the near future.’”

But from Laurie Temple, identified by The Garden Island as “spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood,” comes this hint of the reason for the closure: “‘We’re looking to reopen that clinic when it’s responsive to the need there.’”


‘Essential’ ‘Service’?

Commentary by Reagan domestic policy chief Gary Bauer in the April 23, 2014, End of Day Report for his Campaign for Working Families

The destruction of innocent babies in America is big business. If you don’t believe me, look at the discounts abortionists are offering to entice women to choose death.

Several abortion clinics offer coupons for “liking” their Facebook pages. One Florida abortionist offers a discount as high as $100. A Pennsylvania abortion clinic advertises a $50 discount for “Out-of-State Residents.” A Florida clinic gave a new meaning to the term “Black Friday” with its “After-Thanksgiving Savings” coupon. That’s right – the day after thanking God for His blessings, you can save a few bucks when you abort your baby.

Talk about the cheapening of life! Offering discounts for the destruction of an innocent human baby exposes the callous business model of the abortion industry and its exploitation of women.


Get Serious Now!

April 21, 2014, Washington Update commentary by Family Research Council president Tony Perkins

While millions of people were busy hiding eggs for kids, scientists were hunting for eggs. Human ones.

While researchers in London are growing noses, ears and blood vessels with ethical stem cells, some scientists are still stubbornly plowing ahead with their morally dubious methods. Just last week, scientists from the US and Korea broke the news that they had successfully created cloned human embryos, then killed the young humans for their embryonic stem cells.

While not the first successful human embryo cloning, it is the first time scientists have used the DNA from adults to create the cloned human embryos. By showing that it’s possible to refine the technique and make clones (even embryonic clones) of adults, it brings us even closer to the threat of using this technique to gestate and birth human cloned children. Not surprisingly, some of the more deceptive scientists call this possibility nonsense, but the cloners themselves admit that their embryos could develop into babies if implanted in surrogate wombs.

To keep from alarming people, they insist they only want to “harvest” cells from the unfortunate clones for lab research and cures. Of course, what they neglect to mention is that there are zero cures or treatments available from embryonic stem cells – whether from clones or not. The only bona fide successes – the only successful stem cells – are ethical adult stem cells.

But don’t take our word for it. Take the patients’ – like Jackie [Stollfus], who just beat Lupus with the help of adult stem cells (ASCs) and starred in a new FRC video talking about it.

Until these headlines, most of the debate over stem cells had died down, a casualty of the vastly superior adult stem cells, which have been treating actual patients for years. The consensus became even more obvious when money for embryonic stemcell research started quietly shifting to the ethical and effective alternative of ASCs. With adult stem cells successfully treating more than 80 diseases and conditions, several experts declared an end to the stemcell race. Last Thursday’s announcement won’t change that, but it will certainly make the conversation more interesting.

Editors at the Washington Post cheered this latest development, insisting that “ethical worries” shouldn’t hold the researchers back – even though many believe this path could lead to outright human cloning. “The procedure is not perfect. It took a lot of eggs to record a few successes. Moreover, it is the sort of technique scientists would use if they were trying to engage in reproductive cloning – creating full-formed human beings who are exact genetic copies of other human beings.”

Obviously, you can’t make an embryo without breaking a few eggs – and that’s exactly what FRC’s Dr. David Prentice is concerned about. He and our government affairs team are working to ensure science is bridled by ethics and that research that takes innocent human lives is prohibited. Even the Washington Post, despite its support for this “brave new world,” recognizes the need for some scientific accountability.

And that’s exactly what Congressmen Dan Lipinski (D-IL) and Andy Harris (R-MD) were aiming for with their Human Cloning Prohibition Act. Under their bill, any person or entity would be barred from cloning or attempting to clone a human being. For now, the bill has been referred to the Judiciary Committee, where news like this should help speed up a hearing on the issue.

[Life Advocacy Briefing editor’s note: The legislation to which Mr. Perkins refers is HR-2164, filed by Rep. Harris along with Rep. Dan Lipinski in May 2013 and referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security & Investigations. The Human Cloning Prohibition Act is co-sponsored by Republican Representatives Jeff Miller (FL), Paul Broun (GA), John Fleming (LA), Chris Smith (NJ), Bill Johnson & Robert Latta (OH), Mike Kelly (PA) and Randy Forbes (VA). If human cloning is to be thwarted for the sake of the future of mankind, legislation of this sort must become a serious goal for the Members of Congress; we thank those who have put their names behind this urgently needed legislation and urge others to join the fight.]