Life Advocacy Briefing

April 23, 2018

Pompeo Nomination Needs Our Help
Lawmakers Campaign to Disqualify Abortionists from Family Planning
Cleansing the Public Purse / Arizona Focuses on Coercion
Down Syndrome Abortion Ban Advances / Awkward!
Shutting Down Pendergraft? / Anti-Euthanasia Documentary Nearing Release
Get Ready for Concerted Prayer / Restoring Reason

Pompeo Nomination Needs Our Help

THE SENATE’s FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE IS EXPECTED to vote this week on the nomination of Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State. The former Member of Congress from Kansas is currently Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, a post to which he was confirmed 15 months ago on a vote of 66-32.

Since this is an election year, Democrats in the Senate are raising objections to the Pompeo nomination this time around, and last Tuesday, one of the Minority Senators on the committee, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire, declared her opposition to the President’s choice for the nation’s chief diplomat, stating, reports The Hill’s Jordain Carney, “she has ‘deep concerns regarding Mr. Pompeo’s past statements and policy views, particularly in regards to the LGBTQ community, American Muslims and women’s reproductive rights.’”

We ask our readers to call their home-state Senators now and ask them to vote to confirm Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State. (Capitol switchboard: 1-202/224-3121)

Though the committee’s chairman, Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), “declined to specifically say he would send [Mr.] Pompeo’s nomination to the floor regardless of the vote outcome” in the committee, reports The Hill, “Republicans are expected to give [Mr.] Pompeo a vote before the full Senate even if he doesn’t win over support from a majority of the committee.” He will need a majority vote to secure confirmation by the full Senate and is likely to need votes from some Democratic Senators.

Lawmakers Campaign to Disqualify Abortionists from Family Planning

A TRIO OF LAWMAKERS ON CAPITOL HILL are collecting colleagues’ signatures on a letter to Health & Human Services Secretary Alex Azar “call[ing] on the department to make any entity that offers referrals for abortions ineligible for taxpayer dollars under Title X [Ten],” reports Calvin Freiburger for LifeSiteNews.com, citing The Hill as source. “Current HHS regulations,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “only prohibit funds from being spent on ‘programs where abortion is a method of family planning.’”

The three Representatives circulating the letter are Ron Estes (KS), Vicky Hartzler (MO) and Chris Smith (NJ); all are Republicans.

“Planned Parenthood,” notes Mr. Freiburger, “says its locations represent 13% of Title X facilities and serve 40% of Title X patients.” Yet the number of federally recognized community health centers – which could handle the Title X constituency instead – far exceed the number of shops operated by the nation’s chief purveyor of abortions.

“The letter argues,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “that the existing [HHS] rules are inadequate to prevent Americans’ tax dollars from supporting the abortion industry. ‘Co-located centers may be vulnerable to misuse of funds in support of abortion activities and send a message that abortion is considered a method of family planning,’” the letter reads, “‘in federally funded family planning programs.’”

Cleansing the Public Purse

TENNESSEE GOV. BILL HASLAM (R) HAS SIGNED legislation, reports Calvin Freiburger for LifeSiteNews.com, “to exclude Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers from receiving healthcare subsidies.”

The legislation tasks the state with securing “a federal waiver,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “excluding any provider of elective abortions from TennCare, the state’s Medicaid program. … The ban will take effect within 10 business days of securing the waiver.”

The proposal passed the Tennessee House on a vote of 71 to 17 and the Senate by a vote of 24 to 2.

Planned Parenthood is objecting, of course, to the defunding measure and is claiming pending harm to their customer base, forcing them to travel for medical care. “‘Patients should be able to go to the provider of their choice,’” said a spokesman for Planned Parenthood of Middle & East Tennessee, quoted by Mr. Freiburger. But, “Planned Parenthood only lists four locations in the state, and the pro-life Charlotte Lozier Institute [CLI] notes,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “that Tennessee’s 267 federally qualified health centers and rural health clinics (as of 2015) outnumber them by a factor of 66. The [CLI] map shows alternative healthcare providers,” notes LifeSiteNews, “at or near the location of every Planned Parenthood facility.”

Arizona Focuses on Coercion

ARIZONA GOV. DOUG DUCEY (R) IS EXPECTED TO SIGN a proposal sent to him earlier this month by his state’s legislature, “designed,” reports Calvin Freiburger for LifeSiteNews.com, “to prevent women from being coerced into abortions by imposing stricter standards on abortionists. It also,” he notes, “requires more detailed reporting on women’s reasons for – and complications from – abortion.”

After passing the Arizona House by a 35-to-22 vote, the measure passed the Senate 17 to 13, drawing support from all but one Republican and opposition from all but one Democrat.

“The bill requires abortion facilities to report to state health officials,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “whether an abortion is elective or sought for specific medical reasons, as well as any known medical complications the woman experiences as a result of the abortion.” Also required is a notation of “the medical specialty of the physician committing the abortion,” Mr. Freiburger notes.

And the proposed law “requires abortionists to ask women if they are being coerced into aborting or if they are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, sex trafficking or incest,” notes LifeSiteNews. The aborting mothers “are not required to answer.”

The measure “expressly forbids including in reports,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “‘any other information or identifier that would make it possible’ to identify” the aborting mother.

Said the bill’s Senate sponsor, Sen. Nancy Barto (R), reports Mr. Freiburger, “‘We need to reject the notion that asking a woman, allowing her the opportunity to disclose her coercion into having an abortion, is somehow shaming.’ … Both pro-life and pro-abortion publications have reported on evidence that abortion coercion is common,” notes Mr. Freiburger, “with a 2004 study published in the Medical Science Monitor finding that as many as 64% of abortions involve coercion.”

Down Syndrome Abortion Ban Advances

PENNSYLVANIA’s HOUSE IS THE LATEST legislative body to approval a proposal to bar abortions based on prenatal testing showing the baby is likely to be born with Down Syndrome.

The compassionate proposal passed the State House last Monday “with bipartisan support in a 139-56 vote,” reports The Hill’s Avery Anapol, crediting the Philadelphia Inquirer as source. It now goes to the State Senate but, if passed there, is likely to be vetoed by Pennsylvania’s virulently pro-abortion governor, Tom Wolf (D).  Gov. Wolf vetoed a legislature-endorsed 20-week abortion ban last December.

The measure was sponsored in the House, reports The Hill, by Speaker Mike Turzai (R), who “argued it is an effort to prevent ‘eugenics.’”

Awkward!

IT’s NOT OFTEN THAT PRO-LIFE ACTIVISTS PICKET OUTSIDE A G.O.P. BANQUET, but it happened in downtown Chicago in mid-April when volunteers with the Pro-Life Action League protested Illinois’s GOP governor, Bruce Rauner, outside the Illinois Republican Party’s “Governor’s Dinner.”

Caught in the middle was Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), whose public record is firmly pro-life and who was on hand to keynote his neighbor’s state party fundraising banquet. Both governors are seeking re-election in November, but their records stand in stark contrast when it comes to securing justice and mercy for unborn boys and girls in their respective states.

Just days before the event, Gov. Walker signed legislation reforming Wisconsin’s state employee health plans by excluding abortion coverage. But last fall, Gov. Rauner signed a by-now notorious bill, HB-40, forcing Illinois taxpayers to pay for abortions in the state’s health plans.

Said Eric Scheidler, organizer of the Pro-Life Action League’s protest, quoted by LifeSiteNews.com, “‘Illinois is already the abortion capital of the Midwest, and now thousands more unborn children will be aborted because of HB-40.’”

The protest at the Chicago Hilton “included large signs showing the unborn victims of abortion,” reports LifeSiteNews, “and the group distributed literature on the devastating impact of HB-40 to dinner attendees and the public.”

The Rauner action was a key factor in a robust primary challenge to his renomination on March 20, a primary which he won by two percentage points against an underfunded but conservative, pro-life opponent.

Shutting Down Pendergraft?

FLORIDA HAS FINALLY REVOKED the licenses of four abortuaries associated with convicted felon James Pendergraft, one of the most notorious abortionists in the state. The revocations took effect March 27, with varying effects, notes Operation Rescue’s (OR’s) Cheryl Sullenger. They involve abortion shops in Fort Lauderdale, Orlando and Ocala.

“The revocations were made,” explains Mrs. Sullenger, “as a result of [Mr.] Pendergraft’s October, 2017, drug convictions in South Carolina. … [Mr.] Pendergraft pled guilty … to 10 criminal felony and misdemeanor counts including possession of a controlled substance, possession of marijuana and LSD, possession and distribution [of] prescription drugs without a prescription and manufacture and possession of Schedule I & II Substances. Those convictions [in South Carolina, where he was not licensed to practice],” notes Mrs. Sullenger, “disqualified him from owning or operating any medical facility in Florida”

Some of the Pendergraft abortuaries “remain open for business,” notes Mrs. Sullenger, “under dubious circumstances.”

Said OR president Troy Newman, “‘Pendergraft is one of the most deceptive and deceitful abortionists in the nation. We have long documented his illegal operations and efforts to evade the law. … There can be no redemption for these facilities. They will continue to operate in violation until the [state health administration] realizes their deceptive practices and permanently prevents them from operating. Pendergraft and his cohorts have had a long run killing babies, injuring women and operating outside the law,” he said. “Enough is enough. It’s time to shut them down.”

Anti-Euthanasia Documentary Nearing Release

THE EUTHANASIA PREVENTION COALITION HAS PRODUCED A DOCUMENTARY which EPC executive director Alex Schadenberg told Lianne Laurence of LifeSiteNews.com “will ‘change the way the culture views assisted death.’”

The video features real-life stories of patients targeted for hastened death and of their often-resistant families, including, according to Mr. Schadenberg, quoted by Ms. Laurence, “‘shocking’ testimony by Margreet, ‘whose mother was euthanized in the Netherlands without consent.’ …

Fatal Flaws also features unedited interviews with leaders of the ‘death lobbies in the Netherlands and the United States,’” he told LifeSiteNews, “such as the Right to Die Federation and Death with Dignity.

“‘The film really undoes what the euthanasia lobby has been selling,’” Mr. Schadenberg said. “‘When you’re watching what they’re saying and you listen’” to real-life families afflicted by the death lobby, he said, “‘you realize [the euthanasia lobby’s claims are] all a lie.’”

The actual filmmaker, Kevin Dunn, wrote on the Fatal Flaws website, reports Ms. Laurence, “‘This film is about the growing adoption of a new cultural philosophy, one that has the potential to wreak havoc on society’s vulnerable. And let’s face it, we’re all vulnerable.’”

EPC is offering local screenings of the documentary, which can be requested via e-mail at info@epcc.ca or by calling 877/439-3348. And DVDs will be offered by the respected, Canadian-based anti-euthanasia organization after the film’s May 8 release.

Get Ready for Concerted Prayer

NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER will be observed in hometowns throughout America on Thursday, May 3. Information may be obtained via the Internet at www.nationaldayofprayer.org.

The theme this year, according to organizers, is “Pray for America – Unity,” based on Ephesians 4:3, which, organizers say, “challenges us to mobilize unified public prayer for America, ‘Making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.’”

Restoring Reason

April 12, 2018 Washington Update commentary by Family Research Council president Tony Perkins

            The ACLU has spent so much time in Kentucky over the last two years, it ought to relocate! For the third time, the extremist group is suing the state for doing what voters want: outlawing a violent form of abortion after eleven weeks. “Once again,” an ACLU spokeswoman writes, “the Kentucky General Assembly passed a bill that limits abortion access and, once again, Gov. Matt Bevin signed it into law. … This restriction,” she says, “is part of a national strategy to push abortion out of reach.” You bet it is!

            The dismemberment abortion – or dilation and evacuation – is like something out of a horror movie. It is, as John Daniel Davidson writes, “exactly what it sounds like: A doctor uses forceps to tear apart a live fetus, limb by limb, and remove it from the mother’s uterus. This is usually done in the second trimester, when the fetus is too large to be suctioned out.” And, from what scientists know now, at a time when most babies feel pain. Pro-abortion camps call it simply “D&E,” hoping the two small initials will help cover up the barbaric procedure it represents. Kentucky, like a growing number of other states, isn’t fooled.

            As one doctor explained in an emotional testimony about this kind of procedure in Texas, he couldn’t stomach doing D&Es after he lost his five-year-old daughter in a car accident. At the start of a dismemberment abortion – the same one the ACLU insists is “safe” (no one is quite sure for whom) – he pulled out the first body part and stopped.

            “I didn’t want to continue,” he said. “But I had to, because you can’t leave any body parts in the woman. We don’t pile up body parts on the table to be gruesome; we do it to keep inventory. If we don’t get all the parts out, the woman will get sick, get an infection – she could even die.” When he looked at the stack of miniature body parts he’d just removed, “I didn’t see the woman’s right to choose or the $800 cash I’d made in 15 minutes. I saw somebody’s son or daughter.”

            Now, groups like the ACLU are so determined to protect abortion that they can’t even stop and recognize the brutality of it all. Fortunately, the abortion militants who agree are a rapidly shrinking bunch. Most Americans agree with the common-sense limits on abortion, even if they’re self-identified “pro-choicers.”

            Maybe that’s what has helped drive movements in Tennessee, where Governor Bill Haslam (R) just signed a bill into law defunding the organization that not only defends this kind of abortion – but has tried, Congress believes, to profit from it! Thanks to the state legislature, Planned Parenthood will no longer rake in $1 million a year from Tennessee taxpayers. They’ve also made sure, through their Title X Prioritization Act, that real health centers – not abortion facilities – move to the front of the line for “family planning” money.

            In Rhode Island, the shift over abortion is so palpable that even Democrats are crossing party lines to stop it. Even there, in a deeply blue state, five Democrats sponsored a dismemberment ban. And while the bill didn’t get a vote, it’s a good reminder that cutting up children in the womb isn’t – and should never be – a partisan issue.