Monday, March 29, 2010

Albom and Stupak Mislead on Abortion and Health Care Reform

Mitch Albom’s March 28 column focused on Bart Stupak and his vote in favor of health care reform legislation which didn’t include his own prolife Stupak amendment. During the column, Albom continuously claims that Congressman Randy Neugebauer called Bart Stupak a “baby killer.” Albom never mentions that Neugebauer claims he didn’t call Stupak a “baby killer” but instead yelled out, “It’s a baby killer” while referring to the health care reform bill. Albom also never mentions that Neugebauer apologized to Stupak for yelling during Stupak’s speech and was sorry his “actions were mistakenly interpreted as a direct reference to Congressman Stupak himself.”

Albom’s column also allows Stupak to criticize prolife groups who are critical of Stupak’s change of position. Just weeks before the passage of health care reform, Stupak said the abortion language in the Senate’s version of the bill was “unacceptable” and was “a significant departure from current law.” Since then, the abortion language in health care reform legislation hasn’t changed. Stupak’s position has. Both prolife and pro-choice groups recognize that President Obama’s executive order can’t do anything to change the language of the law. Planned Parenthood’s President Cecile Richards called it “a symbolic gesture.”

Congressman Stupak voted for health care reform even though the legislation didn’t include his own amendment which he recognized was the only way to keep abortion funding out of health care reform. It’s incredibly disingenuous for him to now attack prolife organizations for holding the same position he held a few weeks ago.

Columnist explain why executive order won’t prevent health care reform from funding abortions

Washington Post columnist Kathleen Parker used her Sunday column to explain why President Obama’s executive order can’t prevent health care reform legislation from funding abortions at community health centers.
Several supporters of the bill have argued that this debate is otherwise irrelevant because abortions aren't performed at CHCs. While currently true, this doesn't mean that CHCs wouldn't like to offer abortion among their reproductive services.

Under the new law, they can. There's nothing to stop them.

Here's why. By statute, CHCs are required to provide all "required primary health care services," defined to include "health services related to . . . obstetrics or gynecology that are furnished by physicians."

Federal courts long have held that when a statute requires provision of health services under such broad categories, then the statute must be construed to include abortion unless it explicitly excludes it. VoilĂ .


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

RLM-PAC Rescinds Rep. Stupak's Endorsement

On Wednesday, March 24, the Right to Life of Michigan Political Action Committee notified U.S. Representative Bart Stupak that his endorsement was rescinded. In a letter sent to Rep. Stupak, the RLM-PAC qualified how the endorsement criteria was no longer met.

The letter noted the endorsement had been based on Rep. Stupak's voting record, previous interview and completion of a questionnaire in which Rep. Stupak indicated he would oppose any efforts to include federally funded abortion in national health care plans; support efforts to specifically exclude federally funded abortion in national health care plans; and be willing to vote against federal funding of abortion except where necessary to save the life of the mother.

On March 21, Rep. Stupak failed to meet those requirements by voting for President Barack Obama's health care bill, H.R. 3590.

In accordance with the Right to Life of Michigan Political Action Committee bylaws and by the March 23 unanimous vote of the RLM-PAC Board, the Right to Life of Michigan Political Action Committee rescinded Rep. Stupak's endorsement, effective immediately.

Another member of the U.S. House from Michigan who calls himself prolife, yet voted in support of H.R. 3590, is Representative Dale Kildee. While Rep. Kildee was endorsed by the Right to Life of Michigan PAC in the past, he did not meet the RLM-PAC criteria in 2008 and was not endorsed by the RLM-PAC in that election. Representative Kildee does not meet RLM-PAC's definition of prolife.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Boy in Britain gets new windpipe with the help of his own stem cells

Times Online reports that a 10-year-old British boy successfully underwent surgery to replace his windpipe. Doctors placed the boy's own stem cells on the windpipe to build it up after the donor's cell were removed.

The replacement trachea - the bony tube that connects the nose, mouth and lungs - was stripped of the donor's cells to leave a scaffold which was then laced with the child's stem cells. The boy, aged 10, then received the transplant hours later. The stem cells are now reconstructing the airway and ensuring it is not rejected by his immune system.

The operation was the first to use stem cells with the scaffold inside the body. It was also the first entire windpipe transplant to be carried out on a child and the first to involve the entire length of the trachea.

The doctors who carried out the procedure said the technique reduced greatly the risk of rejection of the new trachea, as the child?s stem cells would not generate any immune response. They said the child, who was not being identified, was recovering well and able to speak.


Monday, March 22, 2010

Right to Life of Michigan Statement on Health Care Vote

U.S. House passes Obama-backed health bill, 219-212

The U.S. House of Representatives on Sunday, March 21, gave final approval to a massive health care restructuring bill, H.R. 3590, strongly opposed by Right to Life of Michigan and National Right to Life Committee.

The House vote was 219 to 212 in favor of the bill. All 219 votes in favor were cast by Democrats. Of the opposing (prolife) votes, 178 were cast by Republicans and 34 by Democrats. The official roll call can be viewed here.

Because the Senate already approved the bill on December 24, 2009, it will now go straight to President Barack Obama for his signature.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, "We are deeply disappointed and dismayed that Rep. Bart Stupak (D) approved of a compromise in the form of an executive order. With the compromise, some prolife U.S. House Democrats supported the health care bill."

Lawmakers who voted for this bill voted to require federal agencies to subsidize and administer health plans that will pay for elective abortion and voting to undermine longstanding prolife policies. This was a key, defining vote.

The executive order promised by President Obama was issued for political effect. It changes nothing. It does not correct any of the serious pro-abortion provisions in the bill. The president cannot amend a bill by issuing an order, and the federal courts will enforce what the law says.

The question of Rep. Bart Stupak's endorsement is one for the Right to Life of Michigan Political Action Committee. As stated above, this vote was scored as a pro-abortion vote and will certainly be a defining factor in present and future endorsements.

Barbara Listing said, "Prolife citizens know, and they will be reminded again and again, which lawmakers deserve their gratitude for voting against this pro-abortion legislation and which lawmakers should not be supported for re-election. This serves as a reminder for us all to be involved in the political process. Lives depend upon it."

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Rep. Dale Kildee Announces Support of Senate-Passed Health Care Bill to Expand Abortion Funding, Right to Life of Michigan Responds

The following may be attributed to Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing:

"Today, Rep. Dale Kildee announced he will support the Senate-passed health care bill. This statement from Rep. Kildee is disappointing coming from a person who calls himself prolife. The Senate health care bill would expand the role of the federal government in abortion procedures because it excludes the language of the Hyde amendment. The Hyde amendment has protected the conscience of tax-paying citizens for more than 30 years by keeping federal funds from being used for abortions. We cannot attempt to care for the health needs of some of the people in the United States by eliminating the life of others under the guise of health care reform. Abortion has no place in health care reform efforts and until clear language is inserted into the Senate-passed health care bill, groups like Right to Life of Michigan will speak up. Health care should not expand abortion funding forcing tax-payers to be part of the deliberate taking of human life. Rep. Dale Kildee may call himself prolife, but his actions speak louder than his words."

Tebow Ad Saves Life

A Focus on the Family blog recently published a letter they received from a young woman who was considering abortion before viewing Focus on the Family's prolife Super Bowl television advertisement featuring Pam and Tim Tebow. The letter is one of many letters they've received in response to the ad. Below is a part of her letter:
I need to thank you so much. It's not like me to reach out to strangers or agencies for help. I was truly feeling lost. I saw the ad during the Super Bowl and it stuck in my head. I feel like that commercial was made to reach out to me.....

Your organization, through the Super Bowl ad and your thoughtful email, saved this baby's life. I have no doubt about that. And in the process maybe you saved my soul. Words just can not express my gratitude, but thank you, thank you, thank you!


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Lawmakers feeling pressure on health care reform


President Barack Obama and Speaker Nancy Pelosi are pulling out all the stops to pass a massive pro-abortion health care bill. The days immediately ahead will decide the issue.

The health care bill (H.R. 3590) was already passed in the U.S. Senate on December 24, 2009. In order to enact it, however, President Obama and Speaker Pelosi must convince a majority in the House of Representatives to also vote for the bill. So far the White House and Democratic leaders have been unable to muster the votes to pass the bill in the House of Representatives, partly because of resistance to the pro-abortion provisions among House prolife Democrats. This effort is being led by Michigan's Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI). It has been reported that President Obama has postponed a trip to Indonesia and Australia to pressure Democrats to support the health care bill.

When all of the pro-abortion provisions are considered in total, the Senate bill is the most pro-abortion single piece of legislation that has ever come to the House floor for a vote since 1973 when Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton were handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court legalizing abortion through all nine months of pregnancy. More Information


The vote is too close to call. All House Republicans oppose H.R. 3590. The outcome will be determined by whether undecided Democrat lawmakers recognize sufficient opposition among their constituents to convince them to vote against the urgings of the President and their party leaders.

In Michigan, the focus is on Rep. Dale Kildee.

Sample message: "I strongly urge Rep. Kildee to OPPOSE the Senate health care bill because the bill contains many pro-abortion provisions."

U.S. Rep. Dale Kildee (D)
Washington, D.C., phone: 202-225-3611

District Offices:
Flint (810) 239-1437
Bay City (989) 891-0990
Saginaw (989) 755-8904
District Toll Free (800) 662-2685

A call of appreciation for Rep. Bart Stupak is also needed.

Sample message: "Please thank Rep. Stupak for his strong prolife leadership and work to keep my tax dollars from paying for abortion as part of national health care."

U.S. Rep. Bart Stupak (D)
Washington, D.C., phone: 202-225-4735

District Offices:
Alpena (989) 356-0690
Crystal Falls (906) 875-3751
Escanaba (906) 786-4504
Houghton (906) 482-1371
Marquette (906) 228-3700
Petoskey (231) 348-0657
West Branch (989) 345-2258
Distict Toll Free (800) 950-7371

Monday, March 15, 2010

Bart Stupak says he’s a “definite ‘no’ vote" on health care reform legislation

In an interview with National Review, Michigan Congressman Bart Stupak (D-Menominee) reveals that he plans to vote “no” on the Democrat’s health care reform legislation because it includes the federal funding of abortion.
According to Stupak, that group of twelve pro-life House Democrats — the “Stupak dozen” — has privately agreed for months to vote ‘no’ on the Senate’s health-care bill if federal funding for abortion is included in the final legislative language. Now, in the debate’s final hours, Stupak says the other eleven are coming under “enormous” political pressure from both the White House and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.). “I am a definite ‘no’ vote,” he says. “I didn’t cave. The others are having both of their arms twisted, and we’re all getting pounded by our traditional Democratic supporters, like unions.”

Stupak notes that his negotiations with House Democratic leaders in recent days have been revealing. “I really believe that the Democratic leadership is simply unwilling to change its stance,” he says. “Their position says that women, especially those without means available, should have their abortions covered.” The arguments they have made to him in recent deliberations, he adds, “are a pretty sad commentary on the state of the Democratic party.”


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Abortion: An Unregulated Industry

Kermit Gosnell is an abortionist. Or at least he was.

The 69-year-old man’s medical license was recently suspended in Pennsylvania and Delaware. When prolifers claim abortion is one of the most unregulated industries in America, Kermit Gosnell is Exhibit A.

Gosnell has been aborting children and hurting pregnant women since before Roe v. Wade. He was a researcher on a failed abortion experiment in 1972 when a couple of abortionists tried to use a new device called the “super-coil” to terminate the second-trimester pregnancies of 15 poor women. An investigation of the experiment found that 9 of the 15 women suffered serious complications.

While performing an abortion in 2000, he perforated the uterus of a woman named Semika Shaw and she died 3 days later. Gosnell settled a suit brought on behalf of Shaw’s two living children which claimed he failed to tell her to seek emergency care.

Over the years, 46 civil lawsuits have been filed against Gosnell. One woman was awarded $5,000 after a court case revealed Gosnell left an arm and leg of her unborn child inside of her and almost killed her.

In November of 2009, a woman receiving a late-term abortion at his clinic died from a heart arrhythmia after being heavily medicated by one of Gosnell’s unlicenced employees.

Yet, despite all of this Gosnell’s license wasn’t suspended until federal agents raided his clinic looking for evidence that Gosnell was illegally prescribing prescription pain-killers. The agents were so disgusted by the conditions in the clinic, they informed the state health department. The state health department did their own investigation and found the clinic to be “deplorable and unsanitary.” They found, among other atrocities, “blood on the floor, and parts of aborted fetuses displayed in jars."

How was Gosnell allowed to run this unsanitary clinic for so long? In Pennsylvania, the health department isn’t required to inspect abortion clinics unless they’re just opening or relocating. This allowed Gosnell to operate in deplorable conditions while killing unborn children and endangering women’s lives for decades without ever being inspected by the state’s health department.

The reaction of pro-abortion groups to the horrors of Gosnell’s clinic was unbelievable. Instead of admitting the problems an unregulated abortion industry can cause and calling for more regulations, they claim the real problem is that Pennsylvania’s tax dollars don’t pay for abortions. At least one Pennsylvania legislator is hoping to change this situation. State Representative Matthew Baker has informed the media that he plans on attempting to require unannounced inspections of all abortion clinics in Pennsylvania.

Until then, authorities will never know how many Kermit Gosnell type “clinics” are operating in their state.

In Michigan, we want all to know abortion is not worthy of a woman. If you are pregnant and looking for help, call 1-800 57 WOMAN. Michigan has numerous pregnancy centers providing free assistance.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Detroit Abortions - the Elephant in the Room

The following letter to the editor was submitted to the Detroit Free Press in response to a Rochelle Riley column which laments the decreasing number of children born in Detroit and attempts to explain the decrease.
A recent Rochelle Riley column lamented the drop in the number of babies born in the city of Detroit and the large number of ob/gyns who have exited the city. The column also attempted to explain the cause of this problem. One reason which was not mentioned was abortion. In 2008, there were 6,365 abortions performed on women who reside in Detroit. This is more than 1/4 of all abortions performed on Michigan residents even though the population of Detroit is less than 1/10 of Michigan's population. In 2007, there were 12,183 children born in Detroit. How can Detroit ever be reborn when more than a 1/3 of all children conceived by women who live in Detroit are aborted?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Health Care Reform

U.S. House may take action this month

President Obama and top Democratic congressional leaders have launched a final all-out push to enact a massive health care restructuring bill that, among other things, contains sweeping pro-abortion provisions.

The Senate passed the pro-abortion legislation (H.R. 3590) on December 24. However, so far the White House and Democratic leaders have been unable to muster the votes to pass the bill in the House of Representatives, partly because of resistance to the pro-abortion provisions among House prolife Democrats, led by Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI).

Nevertheless, President Obama and the top leaders of his party on Capitol Hill have regrouped and are going all out to try to push the legislation into law. "We will pass a bill," vowed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on February 22. Democrats currently control the 435-member House by a 77-seat margin.

A showdown vote in the House is likely to occur before the end of March.

Action Item

Please telephone the offices of your U.S. Senators and your U.S. House member. The Washington offices of your representatives can be reached through the Capitol Switchboard, 202-224-3121. Or, for direct and local numbers, see the Congressional Contact Information.

Sample message: "I am strongly opposed to the health bill that was passed by the Senate, H.R. 3590. This bill contains numerous pro-abortion provisions. The changes recommended by President Obama on February 22 would make the bill even worse. Do not support any health care reform bill that does not include the Stupak language to block government funding of abortion."

Monday, March 1, 2010

RLM News Spring 2010 issue

The spring 2010 issue of the RLM News is now available online. This issue includes stories about the 2010 March for Life and Planned Parenthood.

RLM News Spring 2010