Life Advocacy Briefing

September 27, 2021

Battle On! / More Money for What? / And Then the Threat
Dashing Into Court As Well / Nudging Toward Further Victory
Apple Turns Its Back on Little Texans
Abortion Tourism Fostered in Albany / Texas Soldiers On
In the Courts / National Right to Life’s Urgent Memorandum

Battle On!

THIS BEING LATE SEPTEMBER, Congress is in the throes of its annual fiscal fight over appropriations for the coming fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1 (later this week!). National Right to Life News Today has published a summary of the issues at stake in these last days, authored by NRL’s director of federal legislation Jennifer Popik, JD. It is more comprehensive than we would have been able to produce ourselves, so we are reprinting it at the close of this Life Advocacy Briefing. We commend it to our readers and encourage you, please, to weigh in with phone calls to Congress and prayers to the One Who chartered this nation.


More Money for What?

THE BIDEN REGIME HAS RUSHED TO THE RESCUE down by the border – rescuing not the citizens of Texas from the crush of “immigrants” at the Rio Grande but the Texas abortion industry from the dramatically shrinking customer base brought on by the unconventional Heartbeat Law. At least they’re trying – not only sending tax-funded lawyers into court to try to stop the law but now also rushing more of our tax dollars to the abortion cartel in Texas.

In a “‘three-pronged Department-wide response’ to the Texas Heartbeat Act,” reports Raymond Wolfe for (LSN), the Secretary of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced the huge spending engine’s participation in what President Biden has called a “whole-of-government effort” to thwart the duly enacted law.

“[Sec’y] Becerra said that the HHS will direct additional funding to abortion centers in Texas, including through Every Body Texas, a nonprofit,” notes Mr. Wolfe, “that administers federal ‘family planning’ funds across the state. The funding is intended,” he writes, “to respond to an ‘anticipated increase’ in demand for ‘emergency contraception’ abortifacient drugs, according to the HHS.”

Even more ironically, HHS “also unveiled plans to award up to $10 million in grants to abortion facilities that ‘can demonstrate a need resulting from an influx of clients as a result of SB-8,’ as well as to centers in other states ‘with increased needs overall.’”

Now, from the abortion cartel’s point of view, sending emergency grants to abortuaries in states bordering Texas makes some sense, since abortuaries in Texas are forced by their jeopardy under Texas Heartbeat to turn away customers whose pregnancies have reached the stage of about six weeks – the vast majority of their clientele.

But extra grants to Texas abortuaries, when their customer base has just dried up? Pay them more to do less business? Are the grants intended to help cover their financial jeopardy in the face of developing lawsuits? Many of the shops are turning away customers, not seeing increased demand!

Nonsensical illogic or not, pushing vast sums of taxpayer money at “the problem” is always – to some politicians – the answer. Nice try, Mr. President and Mr. Secretary.


And Then the Threat

IN ANOTHER RESPONSE TO THE TEXAS HEARTBEAT ACT, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS), an agency with the Department of Health & Human Services, has issued a memo, reports LifeSiteNews’s Raymond Wolfe, “suggesting that physicians could be excluded from Medicare and Medicaid” – seemingly the ultimate federal hammer – “for denying an abortion to a woman with an ‘emergency medical condition.’”

In a demonstration of Biden Regime desperation, the memo, reports Mr. Wolfe, “cited the Emergency Medical Treatment & Active Labor Act (EMTALA), which ‘requires that all patients receive an appropriate medical screening, stabilizing treatment and transfer, if necessary, irrespective of any state laws or mandates that apply to specific procedures,’ the CMS said.”

Last we looked, “Active Labor” cannot be meant to apply to abortion. But the memo claimed, reports LifeSiteNews, “‘Stabilizing treatment could include’ the surgical abortion procedure dilation and curettage. … Civil monetary penalties may be imposed against hospitals or individual physicians for EMTALA violations.’” Nice. Suggestion to Texas abortionists: Just quit!


Dashing Into Court As Well

ON THE JUDICIAL FRONT, “an Obama-appointed federal judge,” reports Raymond Wolfe in the LifeSiteNews story, “denied an emergency request by the Biden Dept. of Justice to block SB-8, though a hearing is scheduled for Oct. 1.

“The DOJ has been ‘urgently’ considering other means to challenge [the Texas Heartbeat Act] as well, Atty. Gen. Merrick Garland has said,” writes Mr. Wolfe.

“Urgently” is probably an understatement. The Texas Heartbeat Law, reports Mr. Wolfe, “has resulted in canceled abortions across the Lone Star State and has reportedly shut down some Planned Parenthood centers entirely. According to the [pro-life] Susan B. Anthony List (SBA),” reports Mr. Wolfe, “the [new Texas law] is estimated to save 130 babies per day and to have saved more than 2,000 lives in total so far.”


Nudging Toward Further Victory

PROGRESS APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN MADE on the public opinion front as well, thanks to heavy news coverage of the Texas Heartbeat Law and its implications.

“Recent polling by Rasmussen,” reports LifeSiteNews writer Raymond Wolfe, “has found that a plurality of likely voters support the Heartbeat Act, with 46% in favor compared with 43% opposed,” showing productive opportunities for pro-life candidates to help educate the public about the implications of the six-week heartbeat act.

“Other polls have found,” Mr. Wolfe adds, “that most Americans back strict abortion regulations after six weeks of pregnancy” – a question which, before the Heartbeat Act, they likely have not previously been asked. Remarkable what pro-life attitudes Americans do have, nearly 50 years after the Roe atrocity, if candidates openly discuss their pro-life stands and survey professionals bother to ask the American voter his or her own opinion.


Apple Turns Its Back on Little Texans

THE LATEST CORPORATE-GIANT GAMBIT in the competition to show which outfits can be more anti-Texas and virulently pro-baby-killing comes from the tech company Apple, which, reports Ashley Sadler for, citing the New York Times as source, announced it “will pay for their Texas employees to seek abortions outside the state.”

The company’s latest plunge into abortion advocacy was announced by CEO Tim Cook at a closed-door staff meeting on Sept. 17, reports Ms. Sadler, in a meeting which was “broadcast to all of the Big Tech giant’s roughly 160,000 employees worldwide.” No announcement was made, apparently, about such a “fringe benefit” for employees in the 90-some-percent of countries worldwide whose laws protecting unborn children are stricter than the 1973 Supreme Court has permitted in the US.

“It is estimated,” writes Ms. Sadler, “the [new Texas Heartbeat Abortion Act] will prevent 85% of abortions in [Texas], a state that routinely sees in excess of 50,000 abortions a year.”

Abortions limited, babies saved. Too much justice and mercy, it seems, to suit the likes of Apple execs.


Abortion Tourism Fostered in Albany

NEW YORKERS WHO HAVE CHEERED THE DEPARTURE OF THEIR GOVERNOR, who resigned amid scandal, now have a new problem in Albany. Disgraced Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s successor, former Lt. Gov. – now Gov. – Kathy Hochul (D) last week invited Texas mothers seeking to abort their children to travel to her state to do the deed.

Gov. Hochul announced, reports David McLoone for, “‘For women in Texas, they need to know: we will help you find a way to New York, and we are right now looking intensely to find what resources we can bring to the table to help you have safe transport here and let you know there are providers who will assist you in this time of your need. … You are not alone,’ [Gov.] Hochul promised Texans, adding that their ‘enlightened brothers’ in New York will ‘help you in any way we can.’”

She further declared in the Sept. 15 MSNBC interview, reports Mr. McLoone, “‘We have to wipe out men like Gov. Abbott,’ … adding her opinion that ‘it’s appalling what’s going on in these Republican states. … To the women of Texas, I want to say, I am with you. Lady Liberty is here to welcome you with open arms.’” Aww. Think of that. New York’s new governor is lifting her lamp – and that of her unconsulted taxpayers – to aid in the killing of the innocent among us. Some things do not change.


Texas Soldiers On

TEXAS GOV. GREG ABBOTT (R) HAS NOW SIGNED SB-4, which, explains Michael Haynes for (LSN), “largely prohibits the distribution of contraceptives or ‘abortion inducing drugs,’ implementing a ban on the drugs after the 49th day – or seventh week – of a mother’s pregnancy. Previous laws allowed the drugs to be handed out up to 10 weeks into a pregnancy.

“Physicians may still distribute the drugs before the 49th day at face-to-face meetings but are subject to a number of requirements, including scheduling a follow-up visit no more than 14 days after giving the drug,” explains Mr. Haynes, “to ‘confirm that the woman’s pregnancy is completely terminated and [to] assess any continued blood loss.’”

The LSN story quotes the bill’s sponsor Sen. Eddie Lucio (D), who explained, “‘Doctors need to be present when patients receive these drugs so the patient knows what to expect from normal side effects and what needs to be addressed quickly before it turns into a serious issue.’” Some recognize the drug’s effect on the developing baby already is a serious issue.

Helpfully, the legislation does contain a provision stipulating, writes Mr. Haynes, “that ‘Nothing in this Act shall be construed as creating or recognizing a right to abortion.’ In addition,” he notes, “the bill also places a ban on the mailing of such drugs within the state,’” addressing an opportunity the chemical abortion industry has been exploiting, particularly since the Chinese virus has promoted non-personal delivery even of the abortion drug RU-486 in jurisdictions which have neglected to limit its distribution.


In the Courts

  • IN A STUNNINGLY LONG-RUNNING LAWSUIT, a Clinton-appointed federal district judge, Karen Schreier, refused last month, reports Dave Andrusko for National Right to Life News Today, “to dissolve the injunction she’d issued in June, 2011, that blocked the consultation component” of a South Dakota state law passed in 2011 which, the NRL/NT editor writes, “among other things required that a pregnant woman consult with a pregnancy help center, ensuring that she had all the facts available, before deciding whether or not to abort her unborn child.” South Dakota’s Gov. Kristi Noem (R) “had already promised the state appeal the decision to the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals” and now has announced the state has “retained attorney Jay Sekulow and the American Center for Law & Justice to join the state’s legal team in the ongoing Planned Parenthood v. Noem

  • A TEXAS APPEALS COURT HAS RULED “in favor of pro-life activist Mark Lee Dickson,” reports Nancy Flanders for Live Action, “against the Lilith Fund, a pro-abortion Texas group that gives financial aid to help women abort their babies. The court unanimously ruled to dismiss the suit, which accused [Mr.] Dickson of defamation and conspiracy in 2020. [Mr.] Dickson,” notes Ms. Flanders, “is the director of Right to Life of East Texas and founder of the Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn Initiative.” The Lilith Fund claimed he had committed defamation in reacting to Lilith’s “Abortion is Freedom” billboard campaign by declaring that “the billboard advocated ‘for the murder of … innocent lives,’” reports Live Action. The court ruled his comments were constitutionally protected, dismissing the Lilith complaint and ordering the outfit to pay Mr. Dickson’s court costs and legal fees. Mr. Dickson was represented by the Thomas More Society pro-life pro-bono law firm.


National Right to Life’s Urgent Memorandum

             … While there will be action on the annual spending bill, and a separate $3.5 billion social spending reconciliation bill, pro-abortion Speaker Pelosi (D-CA) has also announced that the House will vote on the sweeping “Women’s Health Protection Act.” [Life Advocacy Briefing editor’s note: Readers are asked to contact their Representative via the Capitol switchboard at 1-202/224-3121 and request a “no” vote on this radical abortion legalization bill.]

             Work has resumed on appropriations bills to fund the government for FY 2022, and the ongoing fight to save the Hyde Amendment to prevent taxpayer-funded abortion continues. During the last week of July, by a vote of 219 to 208, the House of Representatives passed HR-4502, that includes spending for Labor, Health & Human Services (LHHS).  HR-4502 removes the long-standing Hyde Amendment, which bans federal funding of domestic abortions, except in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother. … The Senate will need to defend against taxpayer funding of abortion, and more votes are expected prior to the Sept 30 government funding deadline. It is likely that if no agreement is reached, Congress will work on a short-term continuing resolution to keep the government open. The current appropriation does contain pro-life protections.

             After Roe v. Wade was handed down in 1973, various federal health programs, including Medicaid, simply started paying for elective abortions. By 1976, the federal Medicaid program was paying for about 300,000 elective abortions annually, and the number was escalating rapidly. An amendment by pro-life Cong. Henry Hyde (R-IL) to prevent federal Medicaid funds from paying for abortions was enacted. The Hyde Amendment is widely recognized as having saved an estimated 2.4 million American lives since it was first adopted in 1976 and has proven to be the greatest domestic abortion-reduction measure ever enacted by Congress. In addition, a November 2020 McLaughlin poll showed that 64.6% oppose tax funding of abortion including 49% of Democrats and 69% of Independents.

Also missing from House appropriations bills was Weldon Amendment language which would protect the conscience rights of medical providers and prevent them from being forced to participate in an abortion.

             It is critical to continue to contact your Members of Congress to urge them to retain Hyde and other provisions that prevent taxpayer-funded abortion. [Capitol switchboard: 1-202/224-3121]

             Congress is also working on a massive $3.5 trillion social spending plan using the reconciliation process. The threshold under this process is 51 votes and thus is not subject to a filibuster. To start the reconciliation process, the House and Senate must agree on a budget resolution that includes “reconciliation directives” for specified committees. On Aug. 11, 2021, the Senate passed a budget resolution that included an amendment offered by Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) to apply the Hyde Amendment and the Weldon Amendment (providing conscience protections for persons who do not want to participate in abortions). The Lankford Amendment was added by a vote of 50-49, with one pro-life Senator absent. While non-binding, the effect of the Lankford Amendment is to show majority support in the Senate for the Hyde Amendment as the process continues. The House of Representatives must agree to the budget resolution before the actual budget can move forward. If passed by the House, the budget resolution will unlock a massive reconciliation bill which Democrats intend to use this fall to bypass the filibuster. …

             In response to Texas SB-8, which permits civil remedies against performing abortions after a heartbeat can be detected, Speaker … Pelosi announced the House will vote on the radical Women’s Health Protection Act. The WHPA is designed to remove all legal protections for unborn children on both the federal and state level. Over 100 pro-abortion organizations support the WHPA … .

             “The so-called Women’s Health Protection Act does nothing to protect women or their unborn children,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life. “Calling it the ‘Abortion Without Limits Until Birth Act’ would be more in line with what this legislation actually is. It is a gift to pro-abortion groups and their allies, a wish list of proposals not supported by the public.”

             Among the protective laws that the bill would nullify:

  • Requirements to provide women seeking abortion with specific information on their unborn child and on alternatives to abortion;

  • Laws providing reflection periods (waiting periods);

  • Laws allowing medical professionals to opt out of providing abortions;

  • Laws limiting the performance of abortions to licensed physicians;

  • Bans on elective abortion after 20 weeks when an unborn child is capable of feeling pain;

  • Bans on the use of abortion as a method of sex selection; these anti-sex-selection laws generally have broad public support in the states in which they are enacted, including support from substantial majorities of women.

             The bill would also invalidate most previously enacted federal limits on abortion. That would include federal conscience protection laws and most, if not all, limits on government funding of abortion. National Right to Life strongly opposes this sweeping legislation. [And so does Life Advocacy! How about you? Capitol switchboard: 1-202/224-3121]