[Dan Lipinski, a Democrat, representing Illinois’s Third Congressional District was one of the few remaining pro-life Democrats in Congress. He lost his primary election to a pro-abortion candidate. Here is an excerpt from his piece in the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday.]
Politico’s Shia Kapos posed this question:
“There are some pro-life Democrats, like Tim Kaine, who have found a way to come to terms with the fact that they do not believe in abortion but they also support a woman’s right to choose, so they have been able to kind of maneuver—there isn’t just black and white, there is some flexibility. Did Tim Kaine ever talk to you about that?”
I replied that if you believe life exists in the womb, you have to support policies that protect that life.
The Democratic Party prides itself on being the party of inclusion. Even with a pro-choice plank in the platform, we could concede that there’s a diversity of opinion on the issue, as we once did. That would make sense, since one-third of Democratic voters describe themselves as pro-life, and almost 6 in 10 support some abortion restrictions. But rather than acknowledging these voters’ viewpoint, party leaders and presidential candidates refuse to tolerate anyone who doesn’t support abortion on demand at any time, paid for by taxpayers.
The Democratic Party asserts that its highest priority right now is to defeat President Trump. The party’s treatment of pro-life voters belies that claim.
Coronavirus infections are soaring. According to data from a variety of sources, including the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control, we have 51,215 confirmed cases in the U.S.
Six-hundred and fifty-eight people have died, for a 1.28% fatality rate.
By contrast, the fatality rate for the ‘abortion pill’ (RU-486) is 93 to 99% and surgical abortions are about 99% percent fatal to the human being in the womb.
In light of these contrasting fatality rates, Iowans for LIFE notes the irony behind Planned Parenthood’s reasoning for refusing to shut down during the Coronavirus crisis. PP’s chief medical officer in Long Island, Westchester and Rockland counties in New York, Dr. Meera Shah, one of the hardest-hit areas in the country, explained:
“Our doors will stay open because sexual and reproductive health care is extremely important, and we have to ensure access to it. Pregnancy-related care, especially abortion care, is essential and life-affirming, especially now when there is so much insecurity around jobs and food and paychecks and childcare.”
Iowans for LIFE’s executive director, Maggie DeWitte, has a simple response:
“If Planned Parenthood really wants to affirm life, they should shut their doors.”
The Protect Life Amendment update
At the state level, the Protect Life Amendment is on hold, as the legislative session has been suspended for the next thirty days. As review, the Amendment passed the Iowa Senate. It passed out of the House judiciary committee, followed by a public hearing. Iowans for LIFE testified at every hearing.
All that’s left this session is a vote by the Iowa House. If it passes both houses this session, we need to do it again next. And then it will be ready for a statewide vote by the people. If it passes that final hurdle, the Iowa Constitution will be amended, making it abortion-neutral.
The uncertainty of this session has us all on edge, but the Iowa Coalition of Pro-Life leaders remains in regular contact with legislators. We will inform you of breaking news as soon as we learn more.
Coronavirus stimulus bill
At the federal level, the White House asserted that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tried to slip taxpayer funded abortions into a Coronavirus stimulus bill:
“A new mandatory funding stream that does not have Hyde protections would be unprecedented. Under the guise of protecting people, Speaker Pelosi is working to make sure taxpayer dollars are spent covering abortion — which is not only backwards, but goes against historical norms.”
Another White House official asked:
“What the Hyde Amendment and abortion have to do with protecting Americans from coronavirus?”
IFL Executive Director, Maggie DeWitte, reacted to pro-life Congressional member’s successful efforts at removing abortion from the bill:
“Pro-life legislators have to be on constant alert to look for back-door maneuvers to slip abortion funding into what appear to be innocuous bills. Thanks to the president and his administration for looking out for unborn Americans.”
Pro-life Democrat loses a primary election
In the midst of this health crisis, primary elections took place in three states this week, and another, Ohio, cancelled theirs until a later date. Notably, one of the few remaining pro-life Democrats, Illinois Congressman Dan Lipinski, was defeated by the pro-abortion candidate, Marie Newman.
Lipinski was an eight term incumbent, but that wasn’t enough to stem the tide against Newman, who was backed by a who’s who of Big Abortion, including Emily’s List and NARAL. For good measure, pro-abortion New York Congresswoman, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, actively supported Newman.
Beware future pro-abortion maneuvering
If Newman retains Lipinski’s seat for the Democrats this Fall, it tilts one more vote in the House to the side of Big Abortion. This is more than just worrisome for pro-lifers. As the federal government discerns unprecedented Big Government interventions to prop up our economy during this crisis, the opportunity for more pro-abortion maneuverings increases, especially if the Senate and White House switch parties after November’s elections.
For example, Bernie Sanders calls for a government stake in companies who receive government loans during the Coronavirus crisis. If the party of abortion is in power, they will certainly insist that human abortion services be provided in a company’s healthcare plan, a backdoor way of accomplishing what Sander’s “Medicare for All” would do.
We saw something similar when Obamacare passed. Although not stated in the legislation, Team Obama/Biden issued an executive order mandating abortion and contraception services be included in the health plans for religious organizations, such as Little Sisters of the Poor, even though it violated their First Amendment freedoms.
Political correctness trumps practical policies
Finally, Iowans for LIFE marvels at the shallowness of some of the debate coming from the corner of the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, Joe Biden. His spokesperson, Symone Sanders, went on Martha MacCallum’s show (above) to suggest that the President is racist for calling COVOD-19 the ‘Chinese Virus.’ Here is the exchange:
SANDERS: A leader has to lead from the front, and so what President Trump came out and some of what he announced today was good, but the reality is he also stood at the podium and called the coronavirus, COVID-19, what I would suggest is a racial slur. It’s something that that is offensive—
MacCALLUM: Why? Why is that?. Why would it be, to call it a Chinese virus when it originated in China? Why is that a problem?”
SANDERS It is something that is offensive to many Americans and so that reality is, instead of name calling, instead of pointing fingers, instead of talking about poll numbers, let’s just talk about what we can get done.
As Iowans for LIFE has pointed out, the Chinese government imposed monstrous policies on its people under the guise of their “One Child Policy.” The government ended this program of forced abortions and sterilizations just four years ago, but not before it prevented 400 million births.
Why would Team Biden choose to make an issue of a virus’s moniker, especially in light of the fact that it actually did originate in China, was covered up by the Chinese government for several critical months, and allowed to spread throughout the world? Why waste time on political correctness when people are actually dying?
Why would Team Biden choose this as the issue to focus on when a dictatorial government has imposed so much harm on its own people and the world?
Where China forced their own citizens to have abortions, the party of abortion in the U.S. wants taxpayers to pay for them, even it means sneaking it into the Coronavirus bill.
- The misguided. Oftentimes, these are future pro-lifers. How many women have been hurt by abortion? Millions. Many don’t realize what they are doing until the physical, emotional, and spiritual reality kicks in. Sometimes it takes decades for that to happen. Sometimes minutes.
- The financial profiteers. There’s money in Big Abortion. These are the people who actually create such silly hashtags as #CelebrateAbortionProviders, because it is in their financial self-interest to ameliorate the stigma attached to infanticide.
- The political profiteers. These people are funded by the financial profiteers (who are also effective at turning out the vote). They will, and have, sold their souls to the devil to #CelebrateAbortionProviders. (See Joe Biden.)
As the great pro-life Twitter savant, Bryan Kemper, puts it,
“If you are celebrating #CelebrateAbortionProviders that’s the same as if you were in 1940 celebrating Nazi Concentration Camp Doctors Day. The slaughter of innocent human persons should never be celebrated. I would rather celebrate having hemorrhoids. Shame.”
Whether it’s a helpless baby that has miraculously survived an attempt on its life, also known as an abortion, or a Supreme Court Justice deciding an abortion case, violence, intimidation, and force will be deployed by the acolytes of Big Abortion.
Senate Minority Leader, Chuck Schumer, demonstrated his comfort with violence in his diatribe yesterday:
“I want to tell you, Gorsuch. I want to tell you, Kavanaugh. You have unleashed the whirlwind, and you will pay the price. You won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions.”
Mr. Schumer’s threatened the jurists not to uphold a Louisiana law which requires abortion clinics to have admitting privileges to a hospital within thirty miles.
Schumer’s dishonest response
When upbraided by Chief Justice John Roberts, as well as politicians of all stripes, Mr Schumer responded disingenuously:
“I’m from Brooklyn. We speak in strong language, I shouldn’t have used the words I did, but in no way was I making a threat. Of course I didn’t intend to suggest anything other than political and public-opinion consequences for the Supreme Court, and it is a gross distortion to imply otherwise.”
No, it is not a gross distortion to imply otherwise, as he was specifically targeting the two jurists nominated by Schumer’s enemy, President Trump.
Chuck Schumer gets no pass. The violence and intimidation of abortion taints him. This is the same man who didn’t think the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act was even worthy of a Senate debate.
More dishonesty on ‘born-alive’ protections
He was asked just last month:
“On the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, Senator Sasse argues that this is needed because, under the current law, while you can’t outright kill a baby breathing outside the womb you can neglect it. What is your response?”
His response was again disingenuous:
“We — we voted on this before. It was defeated and Senate — and there’s a law in 2002 that is on the books — current law that covers everything Sasse is talking about. It’s a play to the hard right base. The American people don’t support it.”
The 2000 law did not make it a crime to doctors to deny medical care to the unique human being who survived her abortion, nor does any federal law.
His assertion that the American people don’t support born alive protections is inaccurate at best, and dishonest at worst. According to a survey conducted by YouGov last year, 82% of Americans somewhat or strongly oppose removing medical care for a viable child after the child is born.
Abortion is violence. Chuck Schumer’s rhetoric was simply in keeping with the violent and dishonest legacy of a practice with 60 million American victims.
The Supreme Court heard June Medical Services v. Russo Wednesday morning. The Court will decide if a state (Louisiana, in this case) has the right to require abortion clinics to have admitting privileges to a hospital before they can perform human abortions in their clinics.
Let’s look at the law and today’s hearing:
Has the Court ever had a case similar to this?
Yes. Texas passed a similar law which the Court struck down in 2016 in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt in a 5 to 3 decision. Anthony Kennedy joined the liberal wing of the Court in voting to overturn the Texas law.
So what’s different with June Medical Services v. Russo from the previous case?
Not much, other than Bret Kavanaugh has replaced Anthony Kennedy on the Court, and Kavanaugh’s questions today appeared more sympathetic to the pro-life position than Kennedy’s four years ago.
What did Kavanaugh say?
He suggested that perhaps the Texas case should not apply to the Louisiana case, which would make it more likely for the pro-life Louisiana case to prevail.
Did anything else positive happen in today’s hearing from a pro-life perspective?
Yes. Justice Samuel Alito built upon a brief filed by the Trump administration that argues that these (pro) abortion suits should only be filed by individual patients seeking abortions, rather than the clinics that profit from the abortion trade, which would be a devastating blow to Big Abortion.
Do admitting privilege laws really do any good? After all, couldn’t a woman injured by an abortion procedure simply check herself into any hospital herself?
Yes, she probably could, but that’s not the point. Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie, a policy advisor for The Catholic Association, explains that with admitting privileges, “a patient with a serious complication will be admitted to the hospital by the doctor who knows exactly what went wrong, ensuring that continuity of care will be preserved.”
Can admitting privilege laws actually improve women’s reproductive health?
That’s the wrong questions, since abortion has nothing to do with women’s reproductive health. However, abortion clinics in Louisiana have a history of hiring incompetent doctors, as do so many abortion clinics around the country. Remember Dr. Kermit Gosnell?
Louisiana abortion doctors have been a danger to the reproductive health of Louisiana women, as the 5th Circuit Court found. They described these abortion ‘doctors’ as “incompetent,” “neglectful,” and “non-compliant.” One abortion doctor “used instruments that were rusty, cracked, and unsterile…”
In one case, the abortionist perforated the patient’s uterus, and “the patient continued to have moderate bleeding but the ambulance was not called for nearly three hours.”
Again, do admitting privilege laws really make a difference?
Yes, according to Dr. Christie:
“admitting privileges act as a seal of approval and weed out dangerous practitioners with red flags on their records. This is crucial when the state’s abortion clinics have shown themselves incapable of (or uninterested in) hiring competent physicians to perform outpatient surgeries on vulnerable women.”
“It’s important to note that by requiring admitting privileges for abortion providers, the state of Louisiana isn’t singling them out for special treatment. Rather, the state seeks to bring them “into the same set of standards that apply to physicians providing similar types of services [in other ambulatory surgical centers.]” The guiding principle is this: Louisiana women going in for an abortion ought to be at least as safe as women going in for liposuction.”
Laura Limmex is Executive Director of Restored by Grace Ministries. Here is her pro-life testimony from Tuesday night’s public hearing for the Protect Life Amendment:
Good evening. My name is Laura Limmex. I’m the Executive Director and Founder of Restored by Grace. An organization formed to offer hope and healing to women, men and families struggling to navigate the murky waters of life following an abortion.
A hasty decision
When I was 16, I found myself pregnant. I made the hasty decision to have an abortion out of fear of anyone knowing. Upon arriving at the clinic, I was given no information about the surgical abortion procedure.
In a follow up appointment for the abortion they informed me they had not completely removed the baby and told me I would need to return for another procedure. Before the second procedure occurred, I passed the remains of my baby in a toilet.
We know within these clinics they have a place where they sort through the remains of the child to make sure all the pieces are there. On this day they sent away a 16-year-old girl with an incomplete abortion. And they knew her parents had no knowledge of the abortion appointment.
I was traumatized not only by the procedure, but by the sight of what was left of my child.
My story is one of many. It’s heartbreaking to sit with a woman who is carrying the pain of aborting the only child or children she will ever conceive as a result of the poor quality of care she received during and after her abortion.
It’s awful to hear young women share of the horrors of RU486, also referred to as web-cam abortions.
Men and women have spend years trying their hardest to forget their abortions ever happened. It is said that guilt is to the conscience what pain is to the body. I can tell you keeping the feelings of guilt along with the memories at bay is similar to trying to hold a beach ball under water. Emotionally exhausting.
Today I deeply regret my abortion and I’m not afraid to share the truth that abortion ends a life and leaves another deeply wounded. Not only did I lose my first child to abortion, but grandchildren as this child would be 35 years old today. My family tree is forever changed.
Women and especially their unborn children deserve better. All children deserve a right to life, and women deserve to know the facts about abortion, rather than the deceptive, pro-abortion rhetoric that treats killing an innocent human life as normal.
Give us our voice back
MY story is the reason Iowa NEEDS reasonable abortion restrictions. To protect women like me and the women I work with every day. We can’t allow 5 men in black robes to silence women like me and turn Iowa into a wild west of unrestricted abortion. We need the Protect Life Amendment to give us our voice back.
We ask that you take the appropriate action to ensure the women and children of this great State of Iowa are protected from this judicial overreach and lousy healthcare provided by abortion clinics.
Today, you’re going to hear a lot about abortion, and the organizations I speak for make it very clear where we stand on the sanctity of human life. That little child in her mother’s womb – she’s a baby, and she deserves to be protected.
Broader than the abortion debate
But the Protect Life Amendment is broader than the abortion debate. It’s important that our legislators – and the public – understand what this amendment is about.
First, this amendment does not ban any abortions. It doesn’t change any abortion laws. And if it “takes us back” to anywhere, it’s only to 2018, when 5 unelected judges on the Iowa Supreme Court tried to do an end-run around the Iowa people. They tried to end the abortion debate by arbitrary judicial decree, adding a supposed “right” to our constitution without a vote of We the People.
Unelected judges rewrote the Constitution
This time, unelected judges rewrote the Constitution on abortion. But if we cede to them this power, what’s to stop them from rewriting our speech rights, second amendment rights, or any other rights the judges decide to add or subtract? If We the People – regardless of where we stand on abortion – don’t defend our right to amend the constitution ourselves, if we allow 5 unelected judges to rule over us AND the constitution, why meet in this building at all?
Contrary to what you may hear in testimony today, the judges of the Supreme Court are NOT the supreme rulers of Iowa. Even the judges serve a constitution, one that may only be re-written by We the People. And We the People did NOT add a “right” to abortions, nor do we want to be forced to pay for them. And that is, after all, what the Protect Life Amendment actually says. Thank you.
The pro-life movement makes the case for the sanctity of human life by invoking the overwhelming mountain of evidence provided by science. Scientific evidence persuades secularists. However, many people of faith still accept abortion as a matter of personal conscience. This upcoming weekend’s Mass readings should give these ‘pro-choice’ Christians pause, for it makes a compelling case for the theology of life.
As background for non-Catholics, the Catholic Church produces a lectionary on a three year-cycle, which typically includes an old testament passage, a Psalm, an epistle, and a gospel reading. Many Protestant churches use the same lectionary, because the readings are often arranged around a theme which connects them, which is often stated in the Psalm.
The second reading this weekend comes from the first Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians:
Brothers and sisters:
Do you not know that YOU are the temple of God,
and that the Spirit of God dwells in YOU?
If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person;
for the temple of God, which you are, is holy.
Emphasis added. So what does this mean?
The pronoun ‘you’ can certainly be interpreted in the plural and the singular. In the plural, it can refer to the Church. In the singular, it can refer to our bodies. And if a person is with child, that unique person’s body, no matter the size, is also a temple.
The Spirit of God dwells in both, and our bodies are holy, says St. Paul.
The temple of God
The Gospel reading comes from Matthew 5:38-48. Priests for Life points out how pro-life this passage is:
“The Lord Jesus makes universal the commandment of love. The Father’s “sun rises on the bad and the good, he rains on the just and the unjust.” So Christians are not to draw false boundaries to their love. Christ, after all, now has full authority in heaven and on earth. He has embraced and redeemed the entire universe, and has given us a share in his dominion and in his power to love. “All these are yours, and you are Christ’s and Christ is God’s,” Paul tells us in the Second Reading. So loving everybody comes with the territory.
One of the false distinctions, therefore, is between born and unborn. There can be no difference in our love. The size or age or level of dependency of a child cannot exempt us from loving and caring for the life of that child. Nor can it exempt us from recognizing the personhood of that child in the law. “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” This does not simply mean we love our neighbor in the way or to the extent that we love ourselves. It means we love our neighbor as a person like ourselves. We recognize that whatever differences there may be between ourselves and our neighbors, they still have the same human dignity that we share. We are to see through all the differences, recognize that common dignity, and love them as a person like ourselves.
Ultimately, this command of universal love is not simply an external command. It is not God saying, “Do this because I told you,” as if it were just an item on a list of do’s and don’ts. Rather, it is because we are called to be like God. “You must be perfected as your heavenly Father is perfect.” Perfected in love, in service, in selflessness. “Be holy, for I am holy,” the Lord declares to Moses and the Israelites. His command of love is followed by the declaration, “I am the Lord.” When we hold up the standard of love for born and unborn alike, we are not claiming to be better than anyone else. Rather, we are pointing to the one who made us all, and who wants us all to be just like him.”
The entire Bible is a theology of life. If you believe in God and the divinity of Christ, and yet if you hold pro-choice views, Iowans for LIFE encourages you to prayerfully reflect on the seriousness of these scripture passages.
As expected, the Iowa Senate passed the Protect Life Amendment along party lines in a 32 to 18 vote. IFL Executive Director, was on hand and was interviewed on WOI television, which you can watch here.
The amendment, if passed in two consecutive legislative sessions, and approved by a vote of the people, would undo an Iowa Supreme Court ruling which discovered a “fundamental right to an abortion” hidden in the recesses of the Iowa Constitution.
The Protect Life Amendment doesn’t ban abortion, it simply makes the Iowa Constitution abortion-neutral and returns the power to the people to regulate human abortion.
Senator Jake Chapman said:
“Because the courts made this new fundamental right, heaven forbid Republicans are taking the right away. No, we’re restoring the right of the people to govern themselves. Not un-elected judges.”
For the second day in a row, the Des Moines Register published a misleading and biased online headline:
“Anti-abortion constitutional amendment advances in Iowa.”
As state before, the amendment simply makes the Iowa Constitution abortion-neutral.
The bill also passed the House Judiciary Committee. House Democrats have requested a public hearing before it is debated in the full House, which requires a five day notification.
Iowans for LIFE will let you know when that hearing is scheduled.