Just at the deadline for responding to the AAPS action to intervene in lawsuits challenging the Provider Conscience Clause, the Obama Administration started rulemaking to rescind the Clause completely.
This signals the intention of the Administration to refuse to enforce laws duly passed by Congress to protect medical professionals against discrimination for refusing to participate in procedures that violate their conscience, write Newt Gingrich and Rick Tyler (Newsmax.com 3/16/09).
These laws include the 1973 “Church Amendments,” the 1976 Public Health Services Act Amendment, and the 2004 “Hyde-Weldon Amendment.” The last prohibits certain federal funds from going to agencies or programs that discriminate against providers who decline to offer or refer for abortions.
Former Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt said the Conscience Clause was necessary to protect against growing intolerance for those acting on certain religious beliefs.
Sister Carol Keehan, president of the Catholic Health Association, said “We have seen a variety of efforts to force Catholic and other healthcare providers to perform or refer for abortions or sterilizations.”
The rule places no restrictions on any legal medical procedure. The Obama Administration, however, referred to comments asserting that “individuals could be denied access to services, with effects felt disproportionately by those in rural areas or otherwise underserved” (Steve Ertelt, LifeNews.com 3/6/09).
Apparently, the “right” of some to receive a service implies the obligation of others to provide it, regardless of their opinion about the morality or harmfulness of the procedure.
At a meeting of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), a representative of President Obama denied that abortion has any negative effects on women. In response to a question about the scientific evidence of detriment to the lives and health of women, Ellen Chesler dismissed the evidence as “unreliable because it has ideological elements” (Steven Ertelt, LifeNews.com 3/12/08). Chesler is former senior fellow at the Open Society Institute founded by George Soros, where she directed a $35 million “reproductive rights” program.
The evidence included three studies published in 2008 from the U.S., New Zealand, and Australia. These showed a 30 percent higher incidence of depression and other mental-health problems, a 120 percent increase in risk of alcohol abuse, and a 79 percent increase in risk of drug abuse in women who had had an abortion.
Obama also supported $50 million in funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), which is complicit in using forced abortions and sterilizations to enforce China’s one-child policy, state Gingrich and Tyler.
The deadline for the 30-day comment period is April 9, 2009. You can submit comments to [email protected]. Put “Rescission Proposal” in the subject line of your email. You can also submit comments through www.freedom2care.org.
- AAPS comments on Bush Administration Provider Conscience Clause
- AAPS comments filed with Family Research Council and others
- “New Study Supports Abortion/Breast Cancer Link,” AAPS News of the Day 11/1/07.
- “Induced Abortion and Risk of Later Premature Births,” by Brent Rooney and Byron C. Calhoun, J Am Phys Surg, summer 2003.