Yesterday, the Obama Administration issued a formal regulation to prevent federal funding of abortions in the high-risk pool insurance programs. This only happened because the National Right to Life Committee exposed abortion funding in three state plans to be funded by the federal Government under Obamacare.
Out of the other side of its mouth, the Obama Administration explained that this “is not a precedent for other programs or policies given the unique, temporary nature of the program….” In other words — you caught us this time but we’ll try again.
Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) is introducing legislation to settle the matter of abortion funding permanently. The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act would eliminate the patchwork manner in which the Congress has prohibited abortion funding and ensure that no program or agency is permitted to fund abortions.
Derek Humphry is a familiar name in the euthanasia debate. He headed the Hemlock Society for many years and wrote extensively on euthanasia and assisted suicide. Humphry promoted the use of helium bags to commit suicide for those wanting to “die with dignity.”
The Humphry philosophy and dying method claimed two lives in Milwaukee recently when a retired physician and his wife put helium bags over their heads and pumped helium gas into them to asphyxiate themselves. They were found in one of their cars by a daughter. In their home were suicide notes and a DVD of Humphry’s “Final Exit.”
A Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article says, “The [suicide] note describes Kitty Gute’s failing health, daily indignities and chronic pain. It touches on their determination not to allow the vibrant life they had shared come to an end in a nursing home, where they feared their deaths would be no better than dragged out and wrested from their control.” Kitty Gute was one year past her Alzheimer’s diagnosis.
The daughter who found them views her parents’ deaths as “courageous.” “I hope I can be as bold for my own children,” she says.
Humphry’s Hemlock Society has given way to a more sophisticated version of selling death called Compassion and Choices which has most recently been active in Montana, Idaho and Connecticut in attempting to legalize assisted suicide. Regardless of the organization’s name, the underlying promotion of a culture of death remains the same. Sadly, a Milwaukee couple bought it and have left a tainted legacy for their family.
President Obama has appointed Dr. Donald Berwick to lead implementation of Obamacare. Berwick, an unabashed cheerleader for Britain’s National Health Services (NHS) program, says: ” I am romantic about the NHS; I love it.”
So, how is the NHS program doing? Our good friend, Dr. David Prentice, penned an article describing the utter failure of NHS. According to Prentice, the UK is accelerating its rationing program. The victims: older and sicker people. The beneficiaries: the young.
The NHS plans call for “restrictions on the most basic treatments for the sick and injured,” says Prentice. “Operations including hip and knee replacements and cataract surgery will be rationed in a new attempt to save money…..plans also include cuts for terminally ill patients (dying cancer patients will supposedly be sent home and told to manage their own symptoms), closure of nursing homes for the elderly, cost-cutting measures in pediatric and maternity services and care of the elderly.”
Prentice continues: “Doctors have already been told that their patients can have some operations only if they are given ‘prior approval’ by a ‘primary care trust,’ with each authorization made on a ‘case by case’ basis…..A recent study found that under the British nationalized health care system, inequities in the mortality rate between rich and poor have increased, with the inequalities today worse than those during the 1930s economic depression (prior to the NHS).”
If you haven’t been frightened yet, you should be terrified now. The care of your mother, father, or yourself is being placed into the hands of Berwick who spouts: “Excellent health care is, by definition, redistributional.” Obamacare is built on the premise of redistribution of funds from the old to the young, including redistributing health care. Right up Berwick’s alley.
Planned Parenthood is fighting mad. At President Obama. The Obama Administration plan to fund abortion whenever and wherever it could get away with it under Obamacare blew up when National Right to Life (NRLC) uncovered abortion funding in high-risk insurance plans in three states. The first line of defense was to deny, deny and accuse NRLC of lying. Then, groups like FactCheck confirmed that NRLC was correct in its assessment of the Pennsylvania, New Mexico and Maryland plans as including abortion coverage.
So, Obama reversed course and promised that guidelines would be issued to ensure the programs did not include abortion funding. Planned Parenthood is not taking this well. Nor is a group of 21 strongly pro-abortion House members who sent a letter to the Administration complaining about the promised guidelines.
On its website, PP has initiated a letter-writing strategy against the Obama Administration. Suggested letter to Obama says: “Along with countless other women and men, I worked hard to help you pass a health care reform bill…..Today I am outraged and extremely disappointed that you have decided to place burdens on medically vulnerable women seeking abortion coverage….” Sounds like fightin’ words to me.
The House has already passed the so-called DISCLOSE Act. The Senate will attempt to advance the bill tomorrow with a cloture vote on S. 3628 scheduled. National Right to Life calls DISCLOSE the “Deterring Speech about Congress except by Labor Organizations and Selected Elites” Act. We call it the Incumbent Protection Act.
You may recall that the House put cushy protections in DISCLOSE for labor unions and carved out a giant exception for the NRA. No such perks apply to National Right to Life and Wisconsin Right to Life. This Act would essentially dump our groups from participation in the election process. Essentially, DISCLOSE is attempting to strangle speech about federal candidates in the same manner that the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board is about to do by rule for state candidates. Civil and criminal penalties apply for simply participating in democracy.
These rules/measures are an attempt to reverse the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court decision earlier this year in Citizens United. The rules/measures are blatantly unconstitutional. The problem is that we may be shut down for the 2010 and possibly the 2012 elections as various challenges, certain to be raised, wind their way through the court system. Let’s hope there are 41 brave Senators who will refuse to take this monstrous bill up.
Read entire NRLC letter to U.S. Senators urging a “no” vote on cloture here.
Read Susan Armacost’s op ed piece in yesterday’s Milwaukee Journal Sentinel here.
Today was a good day. We do not look for praise as we fight mightily every day to protect human life. But, a note of encouragement goes a long way to lift our spirits. Below is a note from a supporter which gives a glimpse into what contributions to Wisconsin Right to Life accomplish, and how people appreciate our dedicated and results-oriented work. Enjoy!
“Hi Ms. Lyons, Ms. Armacost, and all at WRTL, … I just wanted to write a thank you to you and your staff. …Your regular emails give me hope and a reality check. The culture where I’m from (Naperville area, IL) seems like a paradise compared to the fierce battleground of liberalism here in Wisconsin. I’m encouraged because I know with all my heart that God smiles on all your office does, and He will turn the tables on the culture soon.
“I have been passionately praying on behalf of the unborn for about 3 years, and I am so encouraged to see all that WRTL does. I have been on the sidewalk at the Aurora Planned Parenthood in IL praying with others and talking to the teen girls that walk in, and it breaks my heart. But I know that your organization is steadily working to inform people, like these teen girls, of the evils of abortion, and I am encouraged how you are fighting in the political, media, and advocacy arenas as well… I am thrilled that my generation, 20’s and younger, are steadily becoming more pro-life (Gallup.com, 5/14/10). I give the credit for that to God, and I thank Him that He is doing it with the help of people like you.
“Please, tell ALL your staff and volunteers, there are literally thousands of teens and twentysomethings just like me, all over the Midwest, who are PASSIONATE about speaking on behalf of the unborn. I was a high school youth leader at a church for several years in IL, and one of our students started a pro-life club in her public high school, and 35 students showed up the second week. What you are doing on a daily basis MATTERS to us and everything you do is WORTH IT. You are the role models who are blazing a trail, just like the civil rights movement in the 60’s. We, the younger generation, are praying for you, WRTL, and we’re thrilled to be a part of history as God is changing the culture. We look up to you. God loves that your office sticks up for the silent, the babies He fashioned by hand, and He will vindicate you someday soon.”
The article is entitled “How China Has Pruned Its Families’ Trees” and it appeared in Time magazine earlier this month. For years, we have been reporting on China’s one-child-per-family policy which has lead to forced abortion and sterilization and other coercive policies. This spring, I reported the firsthand account of a guide we hired when visiting Shanghai. Alice matter-of-factly told us her husband is a teacher, they depend on his income, they have one child, and that were they to have another, her husband would lose his job.
Now, Hannah Beech discusses the impact of the thirty-year-old Chinese policy of “pruning family trees of cousins.” Beech describes how China has achieved economic success and “spared the planet 400 million people.” Beech writes: “Even as foreigners decry the forced sterilizations and other abuses committed by zealous family-planning officials, an uneasy thought emerges: maybe China’s rulers had it right all along.”
The article lists unwanted stark results from the program:
A fertility rate of 1.6, far below replacement level of 2.1.
A huge gender imbalance with a far greater number of men than women as baby girls are aborted. “The Chinese Academy of Social Sciences estimates that by 2020 there will be at least 24 million ‘bare branches’ — men destined to stay single because there are not enough wives to go around. As more of those boys become bachelors, China risks all sorts of social plagues — from criminal gangs to greater trafficking in women,” the article states.
The danger of too many more older people than the young can take care of.
Booming economically? Maybe. But does that growth justify the human rights abuses which occur daily in China? We think not. What do you think?
It didn’t go the way they wanted back in 1973. The abortion debate was supposed to be decided — for good — when it was legalized and doctors in America were supposed to add abortion to the list of services provided. Instead, the number of doctors willing to do abortions has been small. The number of doctors and hospitals willing to just add abortions as another routine service became almost non-existent. This gave rise to the current stand-alone abortion clinics.
In a lengthy July 12 article, the New York Times writes about behind-the scene efforts by abortion advocates to bring abortion training into resident programs and university hospitals. “Its leaders have built residency programs and fellowships at university hospitals, with the hope that, eventually more and more doctors will use their training to bring abortion into their practices. The bold idea at the heart of this effort is to integrate abortion so that it’s a seamless part of health care for women — embraced rather than shunned,” says the article.
Their efforts have been successful in recruiting 10,000 Medical Students for Choice. It has not translated well into real life. The Guttmacher Institute reports that in 1982, over 700 doctors provided abortions in their offices. In 2005, that number had dwindled to 367. “Doctors’ offices now account for only 2 percent of the total number of procedures; hospitals account for barely 5 percent,” according to the NYT article.
There are the personal problems: “….a young professor at the University of Michigan… wrote an academic article about performing an 18-week abortion while she was 18 pregnant….described grasping the fetus’s leg with her forceps, feeling a kick in her own uterus and starting to cry. ‘It was an overwhelming feeling — a brutally visceral response — heartfelt and unmediated by my training or my feminist pro-choice politics…It was one of the more raw moments in my life.’”
Then there are the practical problems of joining a large medical practice which has a policy that no abortions will be provided.
This is a fascinating read into the minds, motivations, and actions of the abortion advocates to change the culture — with very mixed results.
The evidence continues to mount. Douglas Johnson of National Right to Life, who has blown the cover on Obama Administration attempts to sneak through abortion funding under Obamacare, says that Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley announced the creation of a new health insurance high-risk plan funded by federal dollars. When asked what benefits the plan would offer, the response was the same benefit package as the state high-risk plan. The state plan covers abortions.
“The available evidence indicates that the Obama Administration bureaucrats had no intention whatever to impede the funding of abortions through the new federal program to establish high-risk insurance pools — until NRLC sounded the alarm…” says Johnson.
Because the law itself does not prohibit abortion funding, Johnson believes the administration will do whatever it can without being publicly exposed to fund abortions. The Catholic Church and National Right to Life are calling for a new federal law to prevent this mischief from continuing to occur. Absent a law, our only other recourse is to believe Obama’s word that abortions won’t be funded (a joke), and spend our time looking for bureauocratic sneak attacks.
As stated a few days ago, the Obama Administration will fund abortion whenever and wherever it can. The Inspector General’s office for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) now reports that nearly $23 million of US taxpayer dollars has been spent to influence the outcome of a new Constitution in Kenya that would allow unlimited abortions. The vote in Kenya is set for August 4.
Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) has been following this effort and working on investigating grants given to various groups in Kenya supporting a “Yes” vote on the new Constitution. “U.S. dollars should not be used to tell Kenyan people how to vote,” says Smith. Smith and two other House members charge that such contributions violate the Siljander Amendment which reads, “None of the funds made available under this Act may be used to lobby for or against abortion.” Smith has documented the pro-abortion groups who are receiving funding from the U.S,
The office of Vice President Joe Biden released a statement denying the funding is taking place. Of course, when in the wrong, deny, deny. The President himself has coyly both promoted the new constitution in an interview with the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation, and then tried to give the impression that he is “neutral.”
Wisconsin Right to Life has joined many other right-to-life organizations in signing a petition urging a “No” vote on the pro-abortion document.
Read about the pro-abortion Kenyan groups receiving funding here.