Life Advocacy Briefing

July 6, 2015

Get On It! / Cord Blood Research Reauthorization Filed
Texas Abortuary Regs on Hold / Dismemberment Abortions Back in Kansas News
Shutting Down Haskell / Pain-Capable Protection Advances in Ohio / Repeal

Get On It!

NATIONAL RIGHT TO LIFE COMMITTEE CALLED ON THE U.S. SENATE in late June to advance, says the NRL news release, “the No-Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, which,” notes NRL president Carol Tobias, “‘would cover all federal programs – including ObamaCare – so that our tax dollars are not being used to pay for elective abortions.’”

The NRL release came just days after the US Supreme Court refused to weaken the administration of the socialized medicine scheme, noting, “Congress is left with unfinished business in [the] aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling on ObamaCare. …

“The Government Accounting Office (GAO) said that there are more than 1,000 federally subsidized exchange plans that cover elective abortions,” noted Ms. Tobias in the release. “So if a woman decides she wants the abortion,” she explained, “the insurance plan covered by federal subsidies will pay for that abortion.”

Noting that “poll after poll shows Americans don’t want tax funds to pay for abortions but don’t know there is a provision for abortion in the Affordable Care Act,” Ms. Tobias charged the Senate to “move forward with passing the measure and then on to the battle with Pres. Obama over a threatened veto.” We join in her call. (Capitol switchboard: 1-202/224-3121)

The measure was passed by the US House in January by a vote of 242-to-179, offering no deference to the abortion industry’s champion in the White House and his veto threat. HR-7 has been moldering in the Senate Committee on Finance since Jan. 26, which also has in its pending stack the identical Senate version, S-582, which was filed Feb. 26 by Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS) along with 43 co-sponsors.

We ask our readers to contact the Senate co-sponsors, listed here, to thank them for their support of S-582, and to contact their other home-state Senators to request their support for the measure.

Co-sponsoring S-582 with Sen. Wicker are: GOP Senators Jeff Sessions & Richard Shelby (AL), Dan Sullivan (AK), Jeff Flake & John McCain (AZ), John Boozman & Tom Cotton (AR), Marco Rubio (FL), Johnny Isakson & David Perdue (GA), Mike Crapo & James Risch (ID), Daniel Coats (IN), Joni Ernst & Chuck Grassley (IA), Jerry Moran & Pat Roberts (KS), Rand Paul (KY), Bill Cassidy & David Vitter (LA), Thad Cochran (MS), Roy Blunt (MO), Steve Daines (MT), Deb Fischer & Ben Sasse (NE), Richard Burr & Thom Tillis (NC), John Hoeven (ND), Rob Portman (OH), James Inhofe & James Lankford (OK), Pat Toomey (PA), Lindsey Graham & Tim Scott (SC), Mike Rounds & John Thune (SD), Bob Corker (TN), John Cornyn & Ted Cruz (TX), Orrin Hatch & Mike Lee (UT), John Barrasso & Michael Enzi (WY).


Cord Blood Research Reauthorization Filed

REP. CHRIS SMITH (R-NJ) HAS FILED A BILL REAUTHORIZING federal funding of ethical medical research exploring therapeutic uses of adult stemcell lines and promoting storage of cord blood.

Though not yet directly marking up and advancing HR-2820, the Stem Cell Therapeutic & Research Reauthorization Act, the Health Subcommittee of the House Committee on Energy & Commerce has already included testimony on its value in a public health topic hearing, just a week after its introduction by Rep. Smith and eight bi-partisan co-sponsors.

In a statement issued by Rep. Smith, the chairman of the House Pro-Life Caucus said, “This important bipartisan legislation will save more lives” by continuing programs he originally authored. “The adult stem cells found in bone marrow and cord blood provide hope not only for curing the diseases and conditions currently known, but they also set the stage for even more cures in the future.”

Witnesses at the hearing, cited by Rep. Smith in his release, testified to “the potential for future use of cord-blood cellular therapies in treating brain injuries,” citing “trials of autologous (the patient’s own) cord blood in babies with birth asphyxia, … cerebral palsy, hearing loss and autism.”

Dr. Jeff Chell, CEO of the National Marrow Donor Program, was quoted by Rep. Smith as testifying: “Today we are able to treat patients with cancers and pre-cancers, such as leukemia, Myelodysplasia and lymphomas; bone marrow failure disorders such as aplastic anemia and immunodeficiency syndrome, and genetic diseases such as sickle cell disease.”

Attention given to ethical research applying the body’s own cells has advanced medical science and offers unlimited hope for future therapies and cures; the advances have blessedly eclipsed the quixotic demands for human sacrifice in the name of embryonic stemcell experimentation, a battle which the pro-life community won with sustained determination and ethical insistence.

“Cord blood and bone marrow adult stem cells have an applicability and potential,” said Rep. Smith, “that is proven and invaluable, promising life-saving cures for multiple diseases. The program must be extended,” he urged, “and I look forward to this bill advancing quickly through the legislative process and being signed into law.”

Joining Rep. Smith in the initial introduction of what will likely be a popular measure is chief co-sponsor Rep. Doris Matsui (D-CA), joined by Democratic colleagues Raul Grijalva (AZ) and Chaka Fattah (PA). GOP lawmakers co-sponsoring the bill as of our deadline are Representatives Gus Bilirakis & David Jolly (FL), Tim Huelskamp (KS), Renee Elmers (NC) and Tim Murphy (PA).


Texas Abortuary Regs on Hold

THE SUPREME COURT VOTED 5-to-4 IN ITS WANING HOURS to grant a temporary injunction blocking Texas from the scheduled July 1 enforcement of its abortuary standards, which had been expected to result in closure of about half the remaining abortion shops in the state.

Voting to grant the temporary stay to the abortion cartel were Justices Stephen Breyer, Ruth Ginsburg, Elena Kagan, Anthony Kennedy and Sonia Sotomayor.

Most observers expected only nine of the state’s abortuaries would be able to comply with the new state law, which requires abortion “clinics” to meet the same health-and-safety codes as already required of legitimate ambulatory surgical centers and also requires abortionists to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals.

“The temporary stay of [the new law] lasts until the Justices decide whether they will hear an appeal from the abortion industry,” reports Ben Johnson for, “which argues the law’s provisions would unduly restrict a woman’s access to abortion-on-demand. … Should they decline [to hear the appeal],” notes Mr. Johnson, “the law will go into effect in its entirety.”

If they do decide to take the case, it will be as an abortion industry appeal from a 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in early June upholding the Texas health-and-safety regulations.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R), reports Mr. Johnson, “vowed to ‘continue to fight for higher quality healthcare standards for women while protecting our most vulnerable – the unborn. … I’m confident,’” he said in the LifeSiteNews report, “‘the Supreme Court will ultimately uphold this law.’”


Dismemberment Abortions Back in Kansas News

A COUNTY DISTRICT JUDGE IN KANSAS HAS BLOCKED ENFORCEMENT of the state’s new Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Act, which had been set to take effect July 1. The judge’s name is Larry Hendricks, according to a news release from National Right to Life (NRL).

As we reported earlier this year, the dismemberment abortion ban passed both Kansas legislative houses by overwhelming majorities before being signed by Gov. Sam Brownback (R).

“The law would protect a living unborn child from being dismembered,” reports NRL in its release, “‘by extracting him one piece at a time from his mother’s uterus through use of clamps, grasping forceps, tongs, scissors or similar instruments that, through the convergence of two rigid levers, slice, crush and/or grasp a portion of the unborn child’s body to cut or rip it off.’”

This law is critical, in our view, not only to protecting vulnerable little developing babies outright but also to informing the public about the most common method of second-trimester-and-later abortions. According to the National Abortion Federation, dismemberment is the method used in some 96% of such abortions. The American people move away from the abortion cartel’s “rights” agenda whenever the gruesome methods of abortion are exposed.

At the same time, we at Life Advocacy caution pro-life front-liners to draw such verbal pictures only with apparent caution and regret, as our spokesmen must relate to the conscience-searing pain in their audience upon hearing such a description, no matter how familiar the description becomes to those who take the pro-life case to fellow Americans. We cannot afford to be seen practicing verbal shock tactics when we must regretfully seek to expose a shocking reality.

The irony in the Hendricks injunction is that the judge has brought the dismemberment ban back into the news, offering more Americans – particularly those in Kansas – insight into the industry which is demanding that the state stand by and permit such enormities. “Dismemberment abortion” will be in the news every time the statute undergoes a hearing before Judge Hendricks or during the expected appeal process, no matter which way he ultimately rules.



Shutting Down Haskell

THE OHIO HEALTH DEPT. HAS FINALLY ACTED to shut down the Kettering abortuary operated by notorious late-term abortionist Martin Haskell, the man who became notorious in 1992 when he presented the outline of the partial-birth abortion technique to the National Abortion Federation trade group.

In a letter dated June 25, the Dept. of Health, reports Cheryl Sullenger for, “gives [Mr.] Haskell 30 days to provide an acceptable written transfer agreement or face revocation of his facility license, which would force his infamous late-term abortion clinic to shut down.

“The Dept. of Health objected,” Ms. Sullenger reports, “to his submitted agreement that listed Wright State Physicians Women’s Health Care as the group that would provide emergency hospital care for [Mr.] Haskell’s botched abortion patients, since Haskell and his two hired abortionists cannot qualify for hospital privileges. The letter also noted,” writes Ms. Sullenger, “that the hospital that Haskell said would be providing emergency care submitted a letter to the Dept. of Health indicating that they objected to being named in Haskell’s variance and had made no agreements with the Women’s Med Center. …

“The Ohio-based pro-life group Created Equal had conducted a public awareness campaign using thousands of postcards and the Truth Truck,” notes Ms. Sullenger, “which successfully exposed the connection between Wright State physicians and Haskell’s abortion business in the weeks prior to the Health Dept.’s decision to deny the variance.”

Mr. Haskell previously lost a lengthy battle with the Health Dept. last August over his Sharonville “clinic,” which he now is seeking to sell after being denied a license to continue surgical abortions. The chemical route of so-called “medication abortions” just does not seem to satisfy him.


Pain-Capable Protection Advances in Ohio

THE PAIN-CAPABLE UNBORN CHILD PROTECTION ACT CLEARED the Ohio Senate by a 23-to-9 vote in late June. Next stop: the state House of Representatives.

“With this momentous vote,” said Ohio Right to Life executive director Stephanie Krider in a news release, “the Ohio Senate just approved legislation that will help Ohio catch up to the international community’s restrictions on abortion.”

The US House has similarly taken action to bar abortions on pain-capable developing human beings; message to the US Senate: We are waiting. And watching. And praying.



Commentary by Family Research Council president Tony Perkins from June 25, 2015 FRC/Action Update

The 381,517 words of the President’s healthcare law may be a lot for Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to read, but the Supreme Court should have had no trouble with four. At the heart of the King v. Burwell ObamaCare case was one simple question: Did the words “established by the state” actually mean “established by the state?” “You would think the answer would be obvious,” Justice Antonin Scalia said, “so obvious there would hardly be a need for the Supreme Court to hear a case about it.”

Unfortunately for Americans, nothing is obvious in Washington any more – not even the plain language of the written law. In one breathtaking move, six justices chose to ignore those four words – and with it, Congress’s clear intent on the President’s healthcare exchange. Together, they gave the White House another license for lawlessness, costing Americans billions of dollars in illegal subsidies in the process.

Back in 2010, when the President hatched his idea for health care, he knew that many people wouldn’t buy his insurance if they had to pay full price. So, he created a system for financial aid, which offset the cost for people who made less than a certain income. Those subsidies, however, were supposed to be an incentive for states to set up their own healthcare exchange. When 34 didn’t, the Administration panicked. They knew ObamaCare would collapse without those benefits bringing more people into the system. So the Obama IRS did what it does best: pretended those four words (like Lois Lerner’s e-mails) didn’t exist.

By 2012, the agency was pumping out subsidies to Americans everywhere – not just the ones in exchanges “established by the state.” As a result, 87% [of] the people on ObamaCare are getting some kind of healthcare handout “partly or wholly at someone else’s expense,” the Wall Street Journal explained. “… The annual subsidy amounts to $3,312 per recipient. Which is excellent if you are one of the recipients.”

So far, the IRS’s free-for-all has cost taxpayers an extra $30 billion. And the Supreme Court, which had an opportunity to stop the bleeding, didn’t. Through “interpretive jiggery-pokery,” as Scalia called it, Chief Justice John Roberts concluded that “the phrase [‘established by the state’] may be limited in its reach to State Exchanges,” but claimed “it is also possible that the phrase refers to all Exchanges – both State and Federal.”

Once again, the Court has subjected a law passed by Congress to linguistic gymnastics to salvage its faltering performance. Surely, Roberts wrote, “Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them.” But if the law collapsed because of how it was written, that’s Congress’s problem. It was neither the IRS’s role nor the Court’s to rewrite and rescue it. “I wholeheartedly agree with the Court that sound interpretation requires paying attention to the whole law, not homing in on isolated words or even isolated sections,” Justice Scalia argued, along with colleagues Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas. “Context always matters. Let us not forget, however, why context matters: It is a tool for understanding the terms of the law, not an excuse for rewriting them.”

As House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said earlier today, “The only thing that is more disappointingly flawed than today’s decision on what ObamaCare actually meant is ObamaCare itself.”

If the Court won’t address the plain language of the law, Congress must. Fortunately, there are still hundreds of conservatives on Capitol Hill who are determined to undo ObamaCare’s freedom-crushing, conscience-violating, abortion-funding reality. If anything, this will ignite an even bigger fire.

“The politicians who forced ObamaCare on the American people now have a choice,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told reporters: “Crow about ObamaCare’s latest wobble towards the edge, or work with us to address the ongoing negative impact of a 2,000-page law that continues to make life miserable for too many of the same people it purported to help.”

In the meantime, Justice Scalia was right – words do matter. And the one that should be on every conservative’s lips is simple: Repeal.