Life Advocacy Briefing

August 8, 2016

Shocker / Illinois Governor Turns Back on Party & Conscience / Seeking Actual Justice
Recess Agenda / Reality Sinking In / House Voting Record


REP. TIM HUELSKAMP (R-KS) WAS DEFEATED last Tuesday in his quest for nomination to a fourth term. He will be sorely missed as a champion of Life and family values.

The independent conservative was reportedly targeted by an array of players within the so-called GOP establishment and faced a well-financed, ultimately successful campaign against him.


Illinois Governor Turns Back on Party & Conscience

ILLINOIS CONSERVATIVES WERE DEEPLY DISAPPOINTED in late July with the signature of GOP Gov. Bruce Rauner on a viciously pro-abortion proposal which had passed without any votes of lawmakers from his own party.

Not long after his party’s lawmakers on Capitol Hill in Washington voted unanimously to pass a Conscience Protection Act to the Senate, it was an abortion-lobby-generated conscience trampling measure which drew Mr. Rauner’s approval.

“Effective Jan. 1, 2017,” reports Jay Hobbs for Pregnancy Help News (PHN), “the law requires medical professionals in all capacities to go against deeply held religious conscience by referring patients for abortions and counseling patients on what the legislation calls the ‘benefits’ of abortion.”

The outrageous new law is expected to draw a lawsuit from Alliance Defending Freedom and the Thomas More Society, according to the conservative news website. “Similar government-sponsored speech for pregnancy centers,” notes Mr. Hobbs, “has been struck down as unconstitutional in Austin (Texas), Baltimore and Montgomery County (Maryland) and New York City.”

Illinois’s SB-1654 was brought forward as an amendment – which actually, in effect, constitutes a reversal – of the state’s standing HealthCare Right of Conscience Act.

“‘This radical [law] is a direct assault,’” said Emily Zender, executive director of Illinois Right to Life Committee, quoted by PHN, “‘on the consciences of medical professionals and the missions of community-supported pregnancy help centers. Science tells us,’” she said, “‘that abortion ends the life of a preborn child, and for Illinoisans to be forced to participate in any way in abortion is a tremendous injustice.’ …

“The legislation would require pro-life medical providers, including 51 Illinois non-profit pregnancy centers offering free services including ultrasound and sexually transmitted infection testing,” explains PHN, “to take action the bill’s opponents say amounts to participating in an abortion.

“Particularly at issue is the [new law’s] requirement that every Illinois pro-life medical provider of any kind who chooses not to perform a procedure such as abortion or a prescription for birth control has one of three options,” Mr. Hobbs states: “Either they must ‘refer the patient’ to another provider, ‘transfer the patient’ to another provider or provide a list of ‘other healthcare providers who they reasonably believe may offer the healthcare service.’”

The wealthy, first-term governor has represented himself as uninvolved in “social issues;” his wife Diana is, however, known to be deeply involved in organizations which advocate liberal social policies, including abortion. Pillow talk rules.


Seeking Actual Justice

NOW THAT ALL CHARGES HAVE BEEN DISMISSED in the Houston prosecution of David Daleiden and his co-defendant from the Center for Medical Progress, Operation Rescue (OR) president Troy Newman is urging the appointment of a special grand jury “with randomly selected grand jury members” to undertake “new investigations, … with special prosecutors unaffiliated with [Harris County District Attorney] Devon Anderson or others involved in the previous investigations.”

In an OR news release, Mr. Newman called for “a new look into allegations that Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast participated in the illegal trafficking of aborted baby remains. No vote was ever taken on potential charges against Planned Parenthood by the previous grand jury,” OR notes, “which apparently never seriously considered evidence in undercover videos produced by [Mr.] Daleiden,” despite the fact that the grand jury was supposedly charged specifically with examining such evidence.

“There is also evidence,” OR charges, “that [DA] Anderson’s office improperly coordinated and shared information about the grand jury investigation with Planned Parenthood’s attorney, Josh Schaffer. …

“‘We believe that the grand juries under [Mrs.] Anderson’s authority were tainted beyond redemption,’” said Mr. Newman in the OR release, “‘by a personal and political agenda to cover up crimes of abortion providers. The serious accusations against Planned Parenthood of Gulf Coast and against Houston abortionist Douglas Karpen deserve an impartial investigation that is not infected by the bias of personal relationships or political agendas.’”

In citing Douglas Karpen, Mr. Newman called for the reopening of a 2013 murder investigation of a notorious Houston abortionist who “was accused by his former employees of intentionally killing babies who were born alive during late-term abortions at his Houston abortion facilities. There is reason to believe,” asserts OR, “that photographic evidence showing two aborted newborns with large gashes in their throats was never submitted to the original grand jury for consideration.”

“During the murder investigation,” notes OR, “[Mr.] Karpen was represented by one of [Mrs.] Anderson’s closest family friends, Chip Lewis, who later publicly threatened to retaliate against OR for making the evidence it uncovered public. After [Mrs.] Anderson’s grand jury ‘no-billed’ [Mr.] Karpen,” OR asserts, “[Mr.] Lewis donated $25,000 to [DA] Anderson’s political campaigns.”


Recess Agenda

Excerpted from Aug. 3, 2016, FRC Action Alert by Tony Perkins, president, Family Research Council (

Congress has adjourned for recess until after Labor Day, and Congressmen and Senators will be traveling throughout their districts hosting townhalls and public forums. Asking questions at these events is a great way for you to help your elected representatives understand issues of concern for you and your family. For townhall schedules, call or visit the website of your Senators and Congressman (… call the Capitol switchboard at 1-202/224-3121 if you don’t know who your Members of Congress are). Use this issue guide to raise topics related to Life, marriage, family and religious freedom. …

  • As the Democratic Platform and Hillary Clinton call for repeal of the Hyde Amendment restriction which prevents federal funding for abortion on demand, will you oppose this effort? …
  • I support all that faith-based adoption and foster-care agencies do in my state to help children find loving homes, yet in recent years, some states have moved to squeeze out such providers simply because they believe that kids deserve to have both a mom and a dad. Do you support the Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act (HR-5285/S-2706), which would ensure that these important faith-based adoption and foster-care agencies can continue their vital work? …

To ask just your Senator:

  • We all remember the atrocities against the born-alive infants whose necks were snipped by Dr. Kermit Gosnell, and we have seen the Center for Medical Progress’s horrifying videos exposing Planned Parenthood trafficking in baby body parts, including possibly on born-alive infants. Do you oppose infanticide, and can you promise to co-sponsor and vote for Senator Ben Sasse’s Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (S-2066), which the House passed, to enforce and strengthen the principle that born-alive infants are to be protected by law even if they were born after a failed abortion attempt?
  • Since Pres. Obama’s Department of Health & Human Services refused to enforce federal conscience laws barring funding to states which discriminate against pro-life healthcare entities, including healthcare plans offered by churches, will you support Senator James Lankford’s Conscience Protection Act (S-2927), which the House already passed?
  • With the next President to fill the vacancy [in] Justice Scalia’s seat on the Supreme Court, will you promise only to vote to approve a nominee who will defend the original meaning of the Constitution and will overturn Roe v. Wade and Obergefell v. Hodges, which forced abortion and gay marriage on all 50 states?

Reality Sinking In

July 29, 2016, BreakPoint commentary by John Stonestreet

It hasn’t even been a month since the Supreme Court handed down a decision many saw as a massive setback for the pro-life movement. But new data shows that it’s the supporters of legal abortion, not pro-lifers, who face an uncertain future. PRNewswire reports that the Catholic organization, the Knights of Columbus, conducted a scientific survey of 1,000 Americans, 18 and over. And the results were stunning.

Although around half of Americans still call themselves “pro-choice,” 78% — nearly eight in 10 in this country – support substantial restrictions on abortion. It turns out not all Americans who call themselves “pro-choice” take the extreme position that abortion should be legal at any stage of pregnancy for any reason.

And the younger the survey participant, the less pro-choice they become. A similar study by Students for Life of America found that just 17% of millennials support anything-goes abortion. Most, it turns out, want abortion heavily regulated and restricted to the earliest stages of pregnancy. In fact, an astonishing 62% of those who describe themselves as “pro-choice” believe abortion should be banned after the first trimester.

But it gets even more interesting and relevant to current debates. The study also found that over 60 % of Americans oppose taxpayer funding for abortions, and nearly eight in 10 want abortion clinics held to the same standard as other outpatient surgery centers – a rule the US Supreme Court just struck down in Texas.

And speaking of the Supreme Court, 70% of those surveyed say doctors who perform abortions should be required to have hospital admitting privileges – another Texas requirement declared unconstitutional by the Court.

And most remarkably, Americans agree by a margin of 20% that religious healthcare providers should not be forced to perform abortions against their deeply held beliefs.

Let’s be clear about something. This doesn’t amount to a pro-life revolution. Far too many Americans still think abortion should be legal at least in some cases – a position those of us who believe life begins at conception find inconsistent and unbearable. The overall goal of the pro-life movement is not that abortion becomes illegal; we want to persuade hearts and minds so that it becomes unthinkable.

Still, what this study does show is how profoundly out of touch many of our judges and lawmakers are with the American public. Liberals on the Supreme Court and elsewhere are basically keeping unrestricted abortion on “life support” in this country. The overwhelming majority of “we, the people” favor cracking down on the practice.

But what about the rest of the world? The Left loves to tout Western Europe as a model for social democracy and progress. But as [Elisha Krauss] explains in a terrific video at Prager University, abortion laws in the United States are some of the most liberal in the world. Throughout Europe, where such laws were democratically enacted rather than imposed by a court, abortion is widely restricted to the first trimester of pregnancy.

In Germany, Denmark, Belgium and France, abortions after 12 weeks are virtually illegal. Waiting periods and parental consent requirements for minors are common. These kinds of laws raise cries of “theocracy” in the United States. But they’re the democratically enacted norm in much of famously secular Europe.

So what does all this mean? Though we still have a lot of work to do, the cultural winds are fair. Make no mistake: The Supreme Court’s recent edict striking down common-sense safety regulations on the abortion industry is an act of extremism.

Four decades of peering into the womb have forced most Americans to rethink abortion. Those on the bench and elsewhere who refuse to listen are getting lonely. And that’s why now is the time to press hard for change.


House Voting Record

HRes-822 – Agreeing to the Resolution – Rule for Consideration of S-304 – Conscience Protection Act  – July 13, 2016 – Adopted – 242-185 (Democrats in italics)

Voting “yes,” pro/life: Aderholt, Byrne, Palmer, Roby, Rogers/AL; Young/AK; Franks, Gosar, McSally, Salmon, Schweikert/AZ; Crawford, Hill, Westerman, Womack/AR; Calvert, Cook, Denham, Hunter, Issa, Knight, LaMalfa, McCarthy, McClintock, Nunes, Rohrabacher, Royce, Valadao, Walters/CA; Buck, Coffman, Lamborn, Tipton/CO; Bilirakis, Buchanan, Clawson, Crenshaw, Curbelo, DeSantis, Diaz-Balart, Jolly, Mica, Miller, Nugent, Posey, Rooney, Ros-Lehtinen, Ross, Webster, Yoho/FL; Allen, Carter, Collins, Graves, Hice, Loudermilk,  Price, A. Scott, Westmoreland, Woodall/GA; Labrador, Simpson/ID; Bost, R. Davis, Dold, Hultgren, Kinzinger, LaHood, Roskam, Shimkus/IL; Brooks, Bucshon, Messer, Rokita, Stutzman, Walorski, Young/IN; Blum, King, Young/IA; Huelskamp, Jenkins, Pompeo, Yoder/KS; Barr, Guthrie, Massie, Rogers, Whitfield/KY; Abraham, Boustany, Fleming, Graves, Scalise/LA; Poliquin/ME; Harris/MD; Lynch/MA; Benishek, Bishop, Huizenga, Miller, Moolenaar, Trott, Upton, Walberg/MI; Emmer, Kline, Paulsen/MN; Harper, Kelly, Palazzo/MS; Graves, Hartzler, Long, Luetkemeyer, Smith, Wagner/MO; Zinke/MT; Fortenberry, /NE; Amodei, Hardy, Heck/NV; Guinta/NH; Frelinghuysen, Garrett, Lance, LoBiondo, MacArthur, Smith/NJ; Collins, Donovan, Gibson, Hanna, Katko, King, Reed, Stefanik, Zeldin/NY; Ellmers, Foxx, Holding, Hudson, Jones, McHenry, Meadows, Pittenger, Rouzer, Walker/NC; Cramer/ND; Chabot, Davidson, Gibbs, Johnson, Jordan, Joyce, Latta, Renacci, Stivers, Tiberi, Turner, Wenstrup/OH; Bridenstine, Cole, Lucas, Mullin, Russell/OK; Walden/OR; Barletta, Costello, Dent, Fitzpatrick, Kelly, Marino, Meehan, Murphy, Perry, Pitts, Rothfus, Shuster, Thompson/PA; Duncan, Gowdy, Mulvaney, Rice, Sanford, Wilson/SC; Noem/SD; Black, Blackburn, DesJarlais, Duncan, Fincher, Fleischmann, Roe/TN; Babin, Barton, Brady, Burgess, Carter, Conaway, Culberson, Farenthold, Flores, Gohmert, Granger, Hensarling, Hurd, S. Johnson, Marchant, McCaul, Neugebauer, Olson, Ratcliffe, Sessions, Smith, Thornberry, Weber, Williams/TX; Bishop, Chaffetz, Love, Stewart/UT; Brat, Comstock, Forbes, Goodlatte, Griffith, Hurt, Rigell, Wittman/VA; Herrera-Beutler, McMorris-Rodgers, Newhouse, Reichert/WA; Jenkins, McKinley, Mooney/WV; Duffy, Grothman, Ribble, Sensenbrenner/WI; Lummis/WY.

Voting “no,” anti-Life: Brooks, Sewell/AL; Gallego, Grijalva, Kirkpatrick, Sinema/AZ; Aguilar, Bass, Becerra, Bera, Brownley, Capps, Cardenas, Chu, Costa, Davis, DeSaulnier, Eshoo, Farr, Garamendi, Hahn, Honda, Huffman, Lee, Lieu, Lofgren, Lowenthal, Matsui, McNerney, Napolitano, Pelosi, Peters, Roybal-Allard, Ruiz, Linda Sanchez, Loretta Sanchez, Schiff, Sherman, Speier, Swalwell, Takano, Thompson, Torres, Vargas, Waters/CA; DeGette, Perlmutter, Polis/CO; Courtney, DeLauro, Esty, Himes, Larson/CT; Carney/DE; Brown, Castor, Deutch, Frankel, Graham, Grayson, Murphy, Wasserman-Schultz, Wilson/FL; Bishop, Johnson, Lewis, D. Scott/GA; Gabbard/HI; Bustos, D. Davis, Duckworth, Foster, Gutierrez, Lipinski, Quigley, Rush, Schakowsky/IL; Carson, Visclosky/IN; Loebsack/IA; Yarmuth/KY; Richmond/LA; Pingree/ME; Cummings, Delaney, Edwards, Hoyer, Ruppersberger, Sarbanes, VanHollen/MD; Capuano, Clark, Keating, Kennedy, McGovern, Moulton, Neal, Tsongas/MA; Amash, Conyers, Dingell, Kildee, Lawrence, Levin/MI; Ellison, McCollum, Nolan, Peterson, Walz/MN; Thompson/MS; Clay, Cleaver/MO; Ashford/NE; Titus/NV; Kuster/NH; Norcross, Pallone, Pascrell, Payne, Sires, Watson-Coleman/NJ; Lujan, Lujan-Grisham/NM; Clarke, Crowley, Engel, Higgins, Israel, Jeffries, Lowey, C. Maloney, S. Maloney, Meeks, Meng, Nadler, Rangel, Rice, Serrano, Slaughter, Tonko, Velazquez/NY; Adams, Butterfield, Price/NC; Beatty, Fudge, Kaptur, Ryan/OH; Blumenauer, Bonamici, DeFazio, Schrader/OR; Boyle, Brady, Cartwright, Doyle/PA; Cicilline, Langevin/RI; Clyburn/SC; Cohen, Cooper/TN; Castro, Cuellar, Doggett, A. Green, G. Green, Hinojosa, Jackson-Lee, E.B. Johnson, O’Rourke, Veasey, Vela/TX; Welch/VT; Beyer, Connolly, Scott/VA; DelBene, Heck, Kilmer, Larsen, McDermott, Smith/WA; Kind, Moore, Pocan/WI.

Not voting: Hastings/FL, Takai/HI, Kelly/IL, Smith/NE, Pearce/NM, Poe/TX, Ryan/WI.