Life Advocacy Briefing

February 28, 2022

Breaking / Senate to Debate Abortion Lobby Goal
15-Week Ban Advances in Florida / Also in Arizona
Call to Action / Another Nail in the E.R.A. Coffin


OUR EDITORIAL TEAM IS EXPECTING (hoping!) to travel south for some restorative rest and sunshine. Expect to see us back with our March 21 edition. Meanwhile, we have some action points for you!


Senate to Debate Abortion Lobby Goal

TO MANY IN AMERICA, inflation, threats to personal freedom and foreign imperialism are top-of-the-list issues. But to many of our politicians, protecting the abortion cartel always takes center stage. The Senate is expected this week to take up House-passed legislation to enact a national right to abortion, anticipating a Supreme Court ruling favoring Life as soon as this June.

Readers are asked to contact their home-state US Senators now via the Capitol switchboard at 1-202/224-3121 and ask them to vote “no” on debating the so-called “Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA).” And we urge calls as well to Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Susan Collins (R-ME), and Joe Manchin (D-WV) to request their “no” votes on this radical proposal.  

Under current Senate rules, notes (LSN) writer Calvin Freiburger, “the bill would have to receive 60 votes [on a cloture motion] before a final passage vote decided by a simple majority.” That cloture vote is scheduled for any time the Senate resumes its currently recessed session, as early as today, Feb. 28.

“Last May, Democrats reintroduced the WHPA in the US House of Representatives,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “purportedly to prepare for [a future Supreme Court vacating of the Roe v. Wade precedent], though it would go much further than granting the tenets of Roe statutory legitimacy.”

Among its provisions, notes LSN, the proposal “establishes a federal statutory right to perform and obtain abortions, including after fetal viability (under the broad cover of ‘health’), and specifically,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “forbids states from subjecting abortion to ultrasound requirements (even though these are standard to discern fetal age), mandatory waiting periods, informed consent requirements and other health and safety regulations, such as admitting privileges.

“The WHPA also protects so-called ‘webcam’ abortions,” reports Mr. Freiburger, which he defines as “dispensing abortion pills without an in-person doctor’s visit,” and it would forbid “banning abortions on the basis of a baby’s race, sex or disability.” It would also, according to LSN, forbid “banning particular techniques such as dilation and evacuation (D&E) procedures, better known as ‘dismemberment’ abortions because they entail literally ripping unborn babies apart in the womb, then removing them from the uterus limb by limb.”

The US House voted 218 to 211 to pass WHPA last September, and the extremist measure, notes Mr. Freiburger, “has the support of Pres. Joe Biden.”

The WHPA is a good example of the extreme nature of partisan-backed legislation which is stymied in the Senate by the rule requiring 60 votes in order to bring a measure to a vote. It represents one of the many reasons Senate Majority Leader Schumer is determined to overturn the Senate’s long-standing filibuster practice.

So apparently the Biden Regime plans to thwart any move by the Supreme Court to offer justice and mercy to unborn children and their mothers. And spend significant tax dollars to figure out how to do that.


15-Week Ban Advances in Florida

A MISSISSIPPI-LOOK-ALIKE BILL OVERWHELMINGLY PASSED the Florida House on Feb. 16, reports Raymond Wolfe for (LSN). The near-party-line vote was 78 to 39, with just one Republican voting “no.”

HR-5 – now in the State Senate – is “modeled after a 15-week abortion ban in Mississippi currently before the Supreme Court in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Org. The high court,” notes Mr. Wolfe, “has signaled that it may strike down Roe v. Wade in the Mississippi case.” The high court heard oral arguments in the Dobbs case on Dec. 1 and is expected to issue a ruling by late June.

“Around four percent of abortions in Florida – more than 3,300 – occurred at 15 weeks of pregnancy or later in 2020, according to the Charlotte Lozier Institute,” quoted by Mr. Wolfe.

The state’s GOP governor, Ron DeSantis, “has previously stated,” writes Mr. Wolfe, “that he would support a 15-week abortion ban. … ‘I think that’ll be something we’ll be able to sign, and I think a lot of people would be happy with that.’

“[Gov.] DeSantis has also vowed,” reports LSN, “to sign legislation to outlaw abortion when a baby’s heartbeat can be detected, typically by around six weeks of pregnancy.” Such a proposal is not currently on its way to his desk, but the 15-week ban appears likely.


Also in Arizona

THE ARIZONA SENATE PASSED A 15-WEEK ABORTION BAN in mid-February, echoing the Mississippi statute that is currently before the US Supreme Court. The party-line vote was 16 to 13, according to Raymond Wolfe, reporting for

The Arizona version, writes Mr. Wolfe, “states that physicians may not knowingly ‘perform, induce or attempt to perform or induce’ an abortion of a baby after 15 weeks of gestation, except in cases of ‘medical emergency’ that pose risk of death or irreversible injury to the mother. Doctors who violate the law,” notes LSN, “could face felony charges and lose their medical licenses. Like Florida’s bill, there are no exceptions for rape or incest,” an advance toward justice in abortion politics. (Babies are entitled to protection of the law regardless of the circumstances of their conception.)

“SB-1164 is expected to pass the state House,” reports Mr. Wolfe, “where Republicans hold a majority. Gov. Doug Ducey, a moderate Republican …, has signed all pro-life bills that have made it to his desk, according to the Associated Press.”


Call to Action

Feb. 19, 2022, Action Alert from FRC Action

             The US Senate has recently introduced a bill to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act, and your Senators need to hear from you.

             Congress passed the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) in 1994 to improve the criminal justice response to domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking and [to] increase the availability of victims’ services. These are admirable aims, but unfortunately, when VAWA was last reauthorized in 2013, language was added that prevented it from achieving these important goals.

             The current reauthorization text of S-3623 continues and exacerbates these problems by mandating harmful gender identity ideology, maintaining Planned Parenthood’s ability to obtain VAWA grants, condoning of certain grant funds to be used for only limited purposes and limited pools of victims and now possibly opening the door to fund abortion more directly. In short, S-3623 would harm the very women VAWA should be protecting.

             Please contact your Senators now and tell them to protect victimized women by opposing this flawed version of VAWA.*

             Women who have been victims of rape, sexual assault, sexual molestation, sex trafficking and the worst imaginable abuses deserve a safe place to heal emotionally and physically. They should not be forced to share private spaces with biological men, sleep next to biological men or disrobe in front of biological men. Requiring this of women who were abused by biological men compounds their trauma.

             These women deserve as much access to victims’ services as possible. However, the mandates contained in this reauthorization will surely lead to some service facilities closing, [to] other facilities either ending or forgoing partnership with the government, and [to] lawsuits against facilities. All these outcomes would limit facilities’ ability to help victims of abuse.

             S-3623 also creates certain grants that can only be used to help certain victims and perpetuates similar grants that already existed. Funds should instead be made available to serve the maximum number of women without regard to federally-mandated special categories.

             Furthermore, an appropriate mandate for VAWA would certainly include preventing its grantees from perpetuating or covering up the victimization of those they serve. Yet, Planned Parenthood is allowed to be a VAWA grantee despite its coverup of sexual abuse and sex trafficking. They have received over $3 million in VAWA grants since 2010.

             The VAWA reauthorization would further traumatize and reduce resources for battered women; it should be strongly opposed. Please tell your senator to oppose this reauthorization of VAWA and demand better protections for victimized women.

*Life Advocacy Briefing editor’s note: Please do not combine calls to Senators opposing VAWA Reauthorization with calls we requested above concerning “Women’s Health Protection Act.” Please make separate calls so that your messages are recorded properly and are less likely to be dismissed by Senate staff.


Another Nail in the E.R.A. Coffin

Feb. 21, 2022, Washington Update by Family Research Council president Tony Perkins

             On Friday, Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares (R) sensibly withdrew the state from a lawsuit against reality. Under the previous, progressive administration, Virginia had joined Nevada and Illinois in suing the National Archivist to recognize the Equal Rights Amendment, approved by Congress in 1973. These three states argued that their ratification of the ERA brought the total number of ratifying states up to the Constitutionally required threshold.

             The only problem is, the states’ efforts were as misguided as the ERA is dead. The 1973 legislation which [submitted the ERA to the states for ratification] also included a sunset clause. “It was specific, and it would only work for seven years,” explained Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) on [Family Research Council’s] Washington Watch. Congress later extended the deadline once to 1982. When that deadline passed, only 35 states, out of the necessary 38, had passed the ERA. The ERA was officially dead.

             Thirty-five years after the ERA died, progressives disturbed its rest in hopes of reanimating its cadaver. Through shifting demographics and political voting patterns (one reason for sunset clauses on Constitutional Amendments in the first place), progressives now controlled several states that had never passed the ERA. They invented the myth that all that was required for the ERA to join the 27 legitimate Constitutional amendments was for these three states – Nevada, Illinois and Virginia – to ratify it and it would be so.

             That myth has face-planted in cold, hard reality. “Congress has Constitutional authority to impose a deadline for ratifying a proposed Constitutional amendment … . Congress may not revive a proposed amendment after a deadline for its ratification has expired,” argued the Trump Administration’s Justice Dept. Office of Legal Counsel. The Biden Administration’s Office of Legal Counsel agreed, “The ERA Resolution has expired and is no longer pending before the states.” Even the late progressive icon on the Supreme Court, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, said the ERA would have to restart the entire process. “I would like to see a new beginning.”

             It gets worse. Five states have rescinded their ratification of the ERA – Idaho, Kentucky, Nebraska, Tennessee and South Dakota. Ginsburg argued, “If you count a late-comer on the plus side, how can you disregard states that said, ‘We’ve changed our minds’?” Lankford explained that progressives “say time limits don’t matter, and all the states that rescinded their vote … don’t matter because [they] want to just be able to get this.” There is no deeper logical reasoning to their claims; they just want it. Progressives do not consider themselves beholden to the letter of the law when they smell an opportunity to advance their agenda.

             Speaking of progressives’ agenda, the ERA would accomplish little else. Although it seems to protect against discrimination “on account of sex,” the real impact would be to elevate the LGBT agenda to Constitutional equality with rights like religious freedom. Both the Biden Administration and the Supreme Court have tortured the definition of “sex” to include the entire LGBT agenda, not to mention abortion. Already LGBT claims often receive preferential treatment over Constitutional rights like religious freedom. Just imagine the havoc that would wreak if the LGBT agenda ran roughshod over religious rights while wrapped in a cloak of Constitutional legitimacy. This is the issue at the heart of the ERA controversy.

             In response to progressive posturing, Lankford and several colleagues laid out all the reasons why the Archivist should not simply declare the non-ratified amendment to be part of the Constitution. “Don’t do it. Don’t break the law. Don’t ruin your position and your tradition … . When you’ve been the person actually protecting those sacred documents, don’t walk away from them.”