Tuesday, January 27, 2009

LifeNews.com Pro-Life News Report 1/28/09

Obama Tells Democrats to Drop Planned Parenthood Stimulus Funds After Outrage
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- After a national pro-life outcry following news that Congressional Democrats placed a bailout for the Planned Parenthood abortion business in the economic stimulus bill, President Barack Obama has urged party leaders to remove it. Obama is expected to tell Congressional Republicans today during a meeting. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs talked about how Obama is worried that keeping the provision in the bill could jeopardize its potential for passage. "While [Obama] agrees that greater access to family planning is good policy, the president believes that the funding for it does not belong in the economic recovery and reinvestment plan," he said. Republican leaders, including House Minority Leader John Boehner complained bitterly about the plan sending as much as $200 million to Planned Parenthood. Boehner said there is no reason for an economic package to contain funds for the nation's largest abortion business by qualifying more people for family planning funds under Medicaid. During a Friday House Energy & Commerce Committee hearing, Congressional Demcorats added a provision in the legislation that clears the way for expanded federal funding of contraceptives through Medicaid for those who aren't even poor. Full story at LifeNews.com

White House Sacks Pro-Life USAID Admin, Prepares Obama's Pro-Abortion Policy
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- The White House has sacked the pro-life administrator for the USAID foreign assistance program so the agency can begin implementing President Barack Obama's pro-abortion policies. The move follows Obama rescinding the Mexico City Policy to allow taxpayer funding of groups that promote abortions overseas. Today, the White House announced that it has it has replaced Kent Hill, the acting Administrator of USAID under President Bush. Hill has been replaced with Alonzo Fulgham, the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Secretary of the agency and will head up the Office of the Administrator of USAID until a permanent successor is named. Hill had been a friend of the pro-life movement in overseeing the Mexico City Policy. He held weekly phone calls with Rep. Chris Smith, the leading pro-life Congressman who has fought for limits on international abortion funding. Hill also worked closely with Austin Ruse, the president of the Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute, a pro-life group that lobbies at the United Nations. Meanwhile, the USAID office issued a statement Monday indicating that it is implementing the reversal of the Mexico City Policy. "USAID is implementing this change immediately and issued an official notice informing its field offices worldwide," the agency said in the statement LifeNews.com obtained. "Additional specific guidance for USAID agreements officers will be issued later today." Full story at LifeNews.com

Pro-Abortion United Nations Agency Excited Obama Plans to Restore Funding
New York, NY (LifeNews.com) -- The controversial pro-abortion United Nations agency that has been proven to support and be involved in the forced abortion population control regime in China is applauding the news that President Barack Obama will likely restore the $40 million annual funding President Bush revoked. Last week, the president rescinded the Mexico City Policy, allowing over $450 million in federal tax money to go to groups that promote or perform abortions overseas. In an announcement accompanying the move, Obama pledged to restore funding to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) as well. In response, UNFPA executive director Thoraya Ahmed Obaid said, "The President's actions send a strong message about his leadership and his desire to support causes that will promote peace and dignity, equality for women and girls, and economic development in the poorest regions of the world." "And access to reproductive health is at the core of all of these issues," Obaid said. "If a woman cannot make decision about her own fertility, then she cannot make decisions about anything else," Thoraya said. However, the biggest proponent of women not being able to make their own decisions about having children could be the UNFPA because of the connection it has with the Chinese forced-abortion program. Full story at LifeNews.com

Bills to Legalize Assisted Suicide Files in New Hampshire, Hawaii Legislatures
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- With Washington state voters deciding to become the second state to legalize assisted suicide and courts in Montana poised to make it the third, the pro-euthanasia movement is working with legislators in Hawaii and New Hampshire to try to make them states four and five to allow the grisly practice. Hawaii has tried and failed repeatedly to approve a bill to legalize assisted suicide. A coalition of pro-life groups, religious organizations, medical professionals and disability rights advocates banded together to defeat the measure. Now, a new bill, HB 587, has been filed and it requires a suicide "monitor" to be present at the time of the death of the patient. Such monitoring has been condemned in Oregon because it essentially allows the "counselors" who work with Compassion and Choices, a pro-euthanasia group, to sit in when the suicide takes place. The New Hampshire assisted suicide bill, HB 304, seeks to take the Oregon law and expand it further. Rather than defining a terminal illness as someone who has six months or less to live, the New Hampshire bill uses an expansive definition of "terminal illness" that could qualify even more patients for death from a physician. Full story at LifeNews.com

Pro-Life Ex-VP Candidate Sarah Palin Starts New Political Action Committee
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin has started a new political action committee -- in what may be a move to build relationships leading up to a 2012 presidential run. The new SarahPAC appears ready to support candidates for Congress in the mid-term elections next year. "SarahPac is a federally registered political action committee that supports Gov. Sarah Palin's plans to build a better, stronger, and safer America in the 21st century," the new PAC announces on its web site.
"Gov. Sarah Palin believes all Americans must work together for the future, regardless of their party affiliation. Gov. Palin is the official chair of SarahPac, and its supporters are Republicans, Democrats, Independents, and those unaffiliated with any political party," the PAC indicates. The PAC is "to building America's future, supporting fresh ideas and candidates who share our vision for reform and innovation." "SarahPAC believes America's best days are ahead. Our country, founded on conservative principles and the fight for freedom, must confront the challenges of the 21st century with integrity, innovation, and determination," it says. Full story at LifeNews.com

To President Obama: Pro-Life Advocates Will Return to March for Life Next Year
by Starr Parker
In these uncertain times, some things remain constant. One is the arrival each Jan. 22 of tens of thousands of pro-life Americans to Washington, D.C., to note the anniversary of the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision and to mourn. Forty-eight million American children, given the gift of life but deprived of seeing the light of day, have been destroyed in the womb since that Jan. 22 in 1973 when the U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion. So, again this year they came. Change really is not such a new idea in America. They have been coming to Washington seeking change now for 36 years. But apparently the change they want is not change that our new president can believe in. Unlike his predecessor, who annually addressed the shivering crowd, Barack Obama declined their invitation to speak. However, he issued a brief press statement. The statement was not about change but about the status quo, celebrating the 1973 decision. Maybe our first black president doesn't know that, despite blacks being just 12 percent of the American population, black babies constitute 37 percent of all our aborted children. One of every two black pregnancies is aborted.
In the words of my friend, the Rev. Clenard Childress, "The most dangerous place for African-American (children) to be is in the womb of their African-American mother." Full story at LifeNews.com.

Lincoln's Legacy Was Ending Slavery, Obama's Could be Promoting Abortions
by Phill Kline
Truths, beyond the reach of powerful leaders, order history. President-elect Abraham Lincoln failed to recognize this. President Abraham Lincoln lost his life because he did. It is fitting that President Barack Obama assumed office with his right hand on the same Bible on which President Lincoln first assumed office, for when Lincoln first became President, President Obama could have legally been a slave. Obama's Presidency is a national milestone and a significant personal achievement for Mr. Obama, his family and those who supported his candidacy. The same is true for Mr. Lincoln - from log cabin to the White House, Lincoln defeated the odds. Yet, Lincoln's Presidency is not measured great by such. Rather, it is the issue Lincoln desired to avoid, was forced to face, and while struggling with - finally chose right, that renders President Lincoln a great man and President.
The "slavery question" was festering in America prior to the American revolution. Regardless, great men sought compromise with evil and allowed the stain of slavery on American soil as our nation was founded. But "truth keeps marching on." Americans struggled to reconcile the "self-evident truth that all men are created equal" with the obvious truth that in America many were more equal than others and some not considered human at all. Full story at LifeNews.com

Former Swiss Suicide Clinic Worker: Dignitas is Profit-Seeking Killing Machine
Zurich, Switzerland (LifeNews.com) -- A former worker for a Dignitas suicide clinic in Switzerland is speaking out and was so horrified by what she saw that she is now sharing her story with European media. Soraya Wernli was a "companion" worker, someone holding the hand of patients who would take their lives at the Swiss clinic. When Wernli went to work for Dignitas founder Ludwig Minelli she though she would be handling paperwork and helping patients in a supposedly compassionate environment. The experience was far different and much worse. "But then, just a few days into the job, he asked me to sort through the stuff in these plastic bin liners clogging the stairs," she told the London Daily Mail. The contents of the bag included the former possessions of the deceased -- everything from phones and purses to shoes, jewelry and glasses. "I realized these were possessions which had been left behind by the dead. They had never been returned to family members. Minelli made his patients sign forms saying the possessions were now the property of Dignitas and then sold everything on to pawn and second-hand shops," she told the newspaper.
Full story at LifeNews.com

Italian Court Rules Lombardy Regional Government Must Kill Eluana Englaro
Milan, Italy (LifeNews.com) -- A regional court has issued a new ruling in the ongoing saga over the life and death of Eluana Englaro. The Lombardy court ruling that the government of the region must provide a clinic that will remove Eluana Englaro's feeding tube resulting in a drawn-out painful starvation and dehydration death. In November, the highest court in Italy granted Englaro's father the right to kill her via euthanasia by removing her feeding tube. After that, officials in Milan, the capital of the Lombardy region where Englaro is hospitalized, has since barred hospitals under its control from carrying out the decision. On Monday, the Lombardy Regional Court said the Lombardy government was wrong to issue a directive forbidding Lombardy clinics from removing Eluana's feeding tube. Carlo Lucchina, head of the health authority, said that doctors who would breach 'professional duties and obligations' if they were to let Eluana die. Today, a regional government official said it would not comply with the court order. Full story at LifeNews.com

Texas Gov. Rick Perry Backs Abortion-Ultrasound BIll in State Address
Austin, TX (LifeNews.com) -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry urged lawmakers in the state legislature to adopt a bill that would allow women to see an ultrasound of their unborn child prior to having an abortion. The bill made traction before in the legislature and pro-life advocates hope to get it to Perry's desk this time for him to sign. Perry called the bill "another layer of protection for the most vulnerable Texans." "Issues of this complexity and moral weight are the sort of thing that we are sent here to address," he said. Sen. Dan Patrick, a Houston Republican, and Rep. Frank Corte Jr., a San Antonio Republican, are the main legislators sponsoring the bill. In 2007, the state Senate approved the bill and it stalled in the House. Patrick told reporters after Perry's address that his support is "music to these conservative ears." Lesley Ramsey, director of the Texas Association of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, told the media that her group opposes the bill and claimed that letting women see an ultrasound of their baby jeopardizes their health. She also claimed Perry is only supporting the bill to help him in an expected Republican primary against Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, even though he has been a longtime pro-life advocate. Full story at LifeNews.com

Massachusetts Abortion Buffer Zone Subject of Appeal From Pro-Life Attorneys
Boston, MA (LifeNews.com) -- Attorneys from a pro-life law firm have filed an appeal of a judge's decision rejecting a free speech challenge to a new buffer zone that limits the free speech rights of abortion protestors and sidewalk counselors. The Alliance Defense Fund says the law is an unconstitutional infringement on First Amendment rights. ADF originally filed suit against the 35-foot "buffer" zone around abortion businesses in January 2008. They say the law essentially eliminates free speech rights within the zone by restricting pro-life advocates from sharing their message with people entering, the firm says. But U.S District Court Judge Joseph L. Tauro disagreed and said in his opinion that the buffer zone statute is "content-neutral and validly regulates the time, place and manner of expressive activity." Today, ADF attorneys filed a brief on behalf of pro-life advocates in federal appellate court. Full story at LifeNews.com

Australia May Scrap Abortion Funding Limits Thanks to Obama's Decision
Canberra, Australia (LifeNews.com) -- President Barack Obama's decision to force taxpayers to fund groups that perform or promote abortions in other nations could have a larger effect. It may provide the impetus some pro-abortion Australia lawmakers need to topple a national provision similar to the Mexico City Policy Obama ditched. Members of the Australia Parliament have been debating for years whether the nation should reverse its rules preventing foreign aid from supporting an abortion agenda in other nations. While the government of conservative former prime minister John Howard prevented the Australian Agency for International Development from promoting abortions, pro-abortion MPs have pushed Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to repeal the policy. The policy has been place for 13 years and a CNS News report indicates Foreign Minister Stephen Smith, who can change the policy without legislation needed in parliament, has been considering whether to do so. The news web site indicates Jane Singleton, CEO of the Australian Reproductive Health Alliance, has been lobbying Smith to change the provision. Full story at LifeNews.com