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We Must Continue to Move Forward

by | Aug 12, 2020

By Carol Tobias 

Editor’s note. The President’s column appears on page three of the August digital edition of National Right to Life News. Please share the entirety of this 41-page issue with your pro-life family and friends.

NRLC President Carol Tobias

By the time the August digital edition of National Right to Life News arrives in your inbox, there will be just 83 days before the nation chooses between pro-life President Donald Trump and his pro-abortion rival Joe Biden. I would like to place this momentous contest in perspective.

Our Movement is accustomed to ups and downs, victories and defeats.  For many years, every two steps forward seemed to be followed by at least one step backward.  But we persevered.

States would enact laws to require that a woman seeking an abortion be given specific information about pregnancy, abortion and abortion alternatives; to make sure that minor daughters could not get an abortion without parental involvement, and many others. Many states, and Congress, prevented tax dollars from being used to kill preborn children.

But the laws would be challenged in court.  Sometimes the courts would uphold the pro-life law, but many were struck down as a violation of Roe v Wade.  But we remained faithful to unborn children and their mothers.

The 12 years of pro-life Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush were followed by eight years of pro-abortion President Bill Clinton, and then eight years of pro-life President George W. Bush. Those years of plenty were followed by eight years of famine— pro-abortion President Barack Obama.  But we continued to put our shoulder to the wheel.

All the while National Right to Life and its state affiliates initiated creative attempt after creative attempt to limit the impact of the abortion plague. At the federal level, there was the long, long fight to ban partial-birth abortions.  Congress passed the bill twice and President Clinton vetoed it twice.  Congress passed it again with President George W. Bush in office, and he signed the bill. After years of litigation, the Supreme Court upheld the law in 2007.

This brings us to today. The pro-life movement has been steadily marching forward for the past three-and-a-half years because of election victories in the states and because of the steadfast work of the administration of President Donald Trump.

Mr. Biden and the party that he leads has clearly told us of their priorities. Let’s review what their objectives would be if they prevail in 82 days.

Hyde Amendment

Named after the late Congressman Henry Hyde, this language prevents federal tax funding of elective abortions in Medicaid, Federal Employees Health Benefits, and many other programs.  More than two million Americans are alive today because of this amendment.  However, the Democratic Party platform and presidential nominee Biden are calling for its repeal.  

Title X Family Planning Program

The Trump administration has issued rules that returned Title X to its original purpose. They prevent entities from receiving Title X funds if the entity shares a location with an abortion facility.  Also, Title X grantees may not refer for elective abortion.

Because of the Trump administration rules, Planned Parenthood withdrew from the program, forfeiting $60 million in Title X funds rather than restrict their abortion activities.  If President Trump is defeated, those funds will again flow to abortion agencies.

Under the Obama administration, not only was Title X funding given to abortion providers, states were not allowed to direct these funds away from providers deemed unsuitable, such as Planned Parenthood. Thanks to action from Congress and President Trump, future administrative action could not prevent states from redirecting funds away from abortion providers.

Mandatory Insurance Coverage

The Patient Protection Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, authorized massive federal subsidies to assist many millions of Americans to purchase private health plans that cover abortion on demand, subsidized by federal tax dollars.

Under a Biden/Pelosi/Schumer government, insurance policies paid for with federal subsidies will include coverage of elective abortion.

Conscience Protections

Congress has, for many years, included language in various laws to protect the conscience rights of health care workers. There are approximately 25 different provisions in federal law to prevent discrimination against someone who does not want to participate in abortion, sterilization, or assisted suicide.  These statutes will be overturned or ignored under a Biden administration and a Pelosi/Schumer-led Congress. 

Chemical Abortions and Do-It-Yourself Abortions

During the COVID pandemic, abortion advocates have pushed extremely hard to force the Food and Drug Administration to remove the Risk Evaluation Mitigation Strategy (REMS) placed on the drug mifepristone, part of the two-drug “medication abortion” technique. This would allow, among other things, the pill being sent through the mail, directly into someone’s home. The goal? Dangerous do-it-yourself (DIY) abortions.

As has often been pointed out in these pages, chemical abortions are dangerous. Women using these drugs to abort their babies have died from hemorrhages, infections, and the rupture of previously undetected ectopic pregnancies. Allowing these drugs to be sold over the internet and delivered by mail expands and increases that risk, and opens the door to misuse and abuse, as it has in Britain.  There, women are ordering and using these pills far past the deadline, with news there reporting at least two women aborting after 24 weeks gestation, which would qualify as murder under British law.

Allowing DIY at-home abortions is the goal of the abortion industry , and we would very likely see it come to fruition under a Biden presidency.

Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance

This widely expanded version of the Mexico City Policy prevents the use of US tax dollars from being used to perform abortions, lobby to overturn pro-life laws, or promote abortion in other countries.  

This policy has been in effect under Presidents Reagan, H.W. Bush, and G.W. Bush, and was reinstated with broad changes by President Trump.  There is no question this policy will be rescinded under a President Biden and US funds would again flow to agencies that perform and/or promote the killing of unborn children in developing nations.

The Women’s Health Protection Act

I had the great privilege of testifying against this bill before the Senate Judiciary Committee in 2014 but Democrats keep bringing it back.  The bill would invalidate nearly all state limitations on abortion, including waiting periods and women’s right-to-know laws. It would invalidate state laws to protect pain-capable unborn children after 20 weeks fetal age, and it would require all states to allow abortion even during the final three months of pregnancy based on an abortionist’s claim of “health” benefits, including mental health. It would also invalidate nearly all existing federal laws limiting abortion.

Make no mistake.  A Biden/Pelosi/Schumer government would do everything in their power to enact this as federal law.

Judicial Appointments

President Trump, working with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, has done an amazing job, filling vacancies on the federal judicial bench with men and women who believe judges should interpret laws as they relate to the US Constitution and not to the judge’s personal bias. 

President Trump has appointed more than one-fourth (53 of 179) of all federal circuit courts of appeals judges and, for the first time in 40 years, there is no vacancy on the circuit courts.  The circuit courts are just one step below the Supreme Court.  Most decisions from these courts are final, as the Supreme Court takes on a very limited number of cases each year.

President Trump has also appointed 146 of 677 U.S District Court judges.

This is all to the dismay of Democrats.  Several candidates in the democratic presidential primary, as well as many in the media, have advocated “packing” the Supreme Court— adding more seats to the court so that a Democratic president and Senate can add enough  justices to outnumber those appointed by Republican presidents.

Reportedly, the proposed Democratic platform will call for “court reform.”  Although specifics are not identified, it is clear that the party wants to counter the success President Trump has had in filling vacancies on the federal bench.

At the same time the Democrat Party has grown even more radical on abortion, its allies in the media are working overtime to present them as “mainstream.” Joe Biden, we are told, is a “moderate.”

Our job is to make sure the public understands the clear and obvious choice before it. We have much to do in the coming months to make sure we are well-positioned to keep moving forward after November 3.

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