LifeNews.com Pro-Life News Report
Thursday, December 31, 2009
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• Senator: Pro-Abortion Democrats Will Dominate Health Care Conference Cmte
• Ben Nelson to Run Television Ad Defending Health Care-Abortion Compromise
• Obama, Abortion, Supreme Court, Health Care Dominate Pro-Life News in 2009
• Planned Parenthood Found 2009 Difficult, Abortion Centers Closing Rapidly
• Pro-Abortion Health Care Could Cost Dems Control of House in 2010 Election
• Scientists: Embryonic Stem Cells Showing Little Progress 28 Years Later
• Hillary Clinton Barely Edges Sarah Palin as Most Admired Woman in Gallup Poll
• NARAL Bashed for 2009 Hall of Fame, Could Honor Late-Term Abortionist
• GOP Attorney Generals Threaten Suit Against Pro-Abortion Health Care Bill
• California Pro-Life Group's Office Suffers Break-In, Opponents Suspected
• Arizona Pro-Life Advocate Named One of Decades Ten Most Influential
• New Zealand Right to Life: Family Planning Doesn't Justify Abortion Drug Use
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Senator: Pro-Abortion Democrats Will Dominate Health Care Conference Committee
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Senator Charles Grassley is confirming the expectation that the conference committee that will meet to reconcile the differences in the congressional health care bills will be dominated by abortion advocates. If so, the Senate language funding abortions may emerge in the final legislation.
With the House and Senate approving divergent bills, a conference committee must meet to hammer out the final measure for each chamber to vote on before it can go to President Barack Obama.
Grassley said Wednesday during a press conference that Democrats named to the committee will likely "huddle secretly" in order to get the legislation written the way they want.
"I think that this will be one of those instances where, following along on the stimulus bill of last February, I will be a conferee but Democrats will huddle secretly and come to the conclusion of what they want to do and then announce it and, you know, it's a take it or leave it," he said, according to The Hill. "It will pretty much be partisan in conference," he added. Full story at LifeNews.com
Ben Nelson to Run Television Ad Defending Health Care-Abortion Compromise
Lincoln, NE (LifeNews.com) -- One day after a new poll showed him tanking with Nebraska voters because of his decision to compromise his long-held pro-life views and become the 60th vote for the pro-abortion health care bill, Sen. Ben Nelson will run a television commercial during a college football bowl game to defend his decision.
Nelson will make his case for supporting the Senate government-run health care bill that forces taxpayers to fund abortions and would allow the Obama administration to make insurance companies pay for abortions with taxpayers' premiums.
He will air a 30-second television spot during Wednesday night's Holiday Bowl game featuring the University of Nebraska showing him talking directly into the camera.
"With all the distortions about health care reform, I want you to hear directly from me," the Democratic senator says in the ad, according to the Lincoln Journal Star newspaper. Wearing a more casual open-necked shirt and sweater, Nelson will say during the Nebraska-University of Arizona football game: "I listened to you and took a common-sense approach to improve the bill." Full story at LifeNews.com
Obama, Abortion, Supreme Court, Health Care Dominate Pro-Life News in 2009
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- President Barack Obama, abortion, the Supreme Court and health care dominated pro-life news in 2009. As LifeNews.com looks back on the year -- the first with a new pro-abortion president -- we find the pro-life movement essentially on the defensive.
Thanks to a pro-abortion president and Congress, pro-life advocates spent most of their time attempting to hold back the opening of the floodgates ushering in an expansion of abortion and taxpayer financing of it.
With the health care debate continuing into the new year, those efforts will be forced to continue -- although the potential for pro-life gains in the 2010 elections provides significant hope for the future.
1. Health Care: The health care debate has become the central focus of the pro-life movement during the latter half of 2009 and for good reason. If the abortion language in the final bill is anything like what is currently in the Senate version of the legislation, the result would be the greatest expansion of taxpayer funding of abortions since the 1970s when the Hyde Amendment was adopted. The Senate bill not only would allow the forcing of taxpayers to pay for abortions but would let the Obama administration force insurance plans to pay for them as well.
The end result? With Hyde getting credit for stopping more than 100,000 abortions annually, the health care bill could result in a 10% or greater increase in abortions -- all financed with government money. This doesn't even touch on the rationing, promotion of assisted suicide, and lack of conscience protection for medical professionals found in the bill.
2. Barack Obama promoting abortion: The influence of the president of the United States on abortion policy can never be underestimated, despite some who still think the president doesn't have any impact.
LifeNews.com has the most comprehensive chronicle of Obama's pro-abortion actions, but the most consequential ones include his overturning of the Mexico City Policy and allowing tens of millions of taxpayer dollars to flow to abortion businesses like Planned Parenthood and Marie Stopes International that not only do abortions by lobby pro-life nations to overturn or water down their laws. Full story at LifeNews.com
Planned Parenthood Found 2009 Difficult With Abortion Centers Closing Rapidly
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion business in the United States, doing 305,310 abortions in its own facilities or just under one-third of all American abortions. But the billion-dollar abortion giant faced a tough year in 2009 as it saw abortion centers close at a higher rate than normal.
Jim Sedlak, the director of STOPP International, a watchdog group, told LifeNews.com today that he's seen Planned Parenthood centers close over the year but never as fast as in 2009.
"STOPP has been fighting for 25 years to close down Planned Parenthood abortion facilities. During that time, we have seen the number of Planned Parenthood non-express clinics fall from a high of 938 in 1995 to 797 today," he explained. "More significantly, 2009 saw the rate of Planned Parenthood closings go from one a month to over two a month," he said.
"Although the organization reported record income ($1.04 billion) and a record number of babies killed in its own facilities, there have been a number of signs that Planned Parenthood is beginning to feel the relentless pressure from those of us who will not stand by and watch it take our money and kill our children," he said. Full story at LifeNews.com
Pro-Abortion Health Care Could Cost Democrats Control of House in 2010 Election
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- With less than 48 hours before the 2010 calendar year begins and jut 11 months until the 2010 Congressional elections, prognosticators are already firing off predictions on what will happen.
Most handicappers suggest Republicans will pick up seats in Congress because of the pro-abortion health care bill and Americans' disapproval of the Obama presidency.
But Reuters writer James Pethokoukis suggests it could cost Democrats control of the House entirely.
Pethokoukis points to modern history as a predictor of things to come. "American politics has a regular ebb and flow. In 13 of the past 15 midterm elections going back to 1950, the party in control of the White House has lost an average of 22 seats in the House. In 10 of the past 15 midterms the party running the Senate has lost an average of three seats," he said.
More recent political results show a change coming with pro-life Republicans winning gubernatorial races in the off-year elections in Virginia, replacing a pro-abortion Democrat, and in New Jersey. Full story at LifeNews.com
Scientists: Embryonic Stem Cell Research Showing Little Progress 28 Years Later
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- In the 28 years that scientists have been toying with embryonic stem cells in animals and humans, not one human patient has even been treated. Despite President Barack Obama forcing taxpayers to fund the research, that destroys human life, scientists don't expect that to change anytime soon.
In a new interview with NPR, Len Zon, a stem cell researcher at Children's Hospital in Boston, admits that any hope of treating patients with embryonic stem cells is not forthcoming.
"I think that's still a ways off," Zon said. "Although there are some studies that the FDA is considering, I think we still have to figure out how to make these cells in a more efficient and effective way, and I think that's going to take awhile," he said.
Part of the effectiveness problem revolves around the fact that embryonic stem cells, when inserted as treatments in animals, still form tumors and prompt rejection issues from the immune system.
Zon told NPR that he holds out more hope for the new development called direct reprogramming. That's the process discovered by Japanese researcher Shinya that reverts adult stem cells to an embryonic-like state and avoids having to kill unborn children to obtain the cells. But even this process has yet to treat patients with the induced pluripotent stem cells (IPSCs) it creates. Full story at LifeNews.com
Hillary Clinton Barely Edges Sarah Palin as Most Admired Woman in Gallup Poll
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Pro-abortion Secretary of State Hillary Clinton barely edged pro-life former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin in a new Gallup poll asking respondents to name the woman they most admired. Clinton continued her placement atop the list but barely beat Palin 16 to 15 percent.
Talk show host Oprah Winfrey and first lady Michelle Obama finish third and fourth, with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Queen Elizabeth II, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, and poet Maya Angelou -- all regulars on the list -- joined by newcomers German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Elin Woods in the top 10.
The poll asked for people to name their first and second choice of women living today that they admired and Winfrey received 8 percent, Obama 7 percent and Rice and Queen Elizabeth 2 percent each.
Hillary Clinton has now been named Most Admired Woman 14 times since 1993, spanning her career as first lady, New York senator, and now secretary of state. The three times she has not finished first during this time, she earned second place (to Laura Bush in 2001 and to Mother Teresa in 1995 and 1996). Full story at LifeNews.com
NARAL Bashed for 2009 Hall of Fame Award, Could Honor Late-Term Abortionist
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- The top pro-abortion group NARAL is holding an end-of-the-year award voting process for its members. The award vote gives them a chance to vote on their favorite abortion advocate and the pro-life advocate or legislation they despise the most.
The Hall of Fame 2009 candidates include MSNBC talk show host Rachel Maddow, whose abortion advocacy knows no limits.
The Baltimore City Council, which recently passed a measure targeting pregnancy centers, can also receive an award as can a group of pro-abortion lawmakers who worked to force taxpayers to fund abortions in the nation's capital.
But one pro-life group tells LifeNews.com that the nomination of late-term abortion practitioner LeRoy Carhart for the NARAL Hall of Fame takes the cake.
Carhart is the Omaha, Nebraska-based abortion practitioner who has attempted to step into the shoes of late-term abortion practitioner George Tiller of Kansas, who was shot and killed earlier this year. Full story at LifeNews.com
GOP Attorney Generals Threaten Lawsuit Against Pro-Abortion Health Care Bill
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Thirteen Republican attorney generals are threatening a lawsuit against the pro-abortion health care bill. Although the suit would not challenge its abortion funding component, it could help pro-life advocates by overturning the bill if it becomes law. The officials provided a letter to the Associated Press threatening the lawsuit over the Medicare funding provisions in the deal Sen. Ben Nelson secured with Senate leader Harry Reid to become the 60th vote for the bill. The deal also included abortion funding. "We believe this provision is constitutionally flawed," South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster and the 12 other attorneys general wrote in the letter sent to Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. As chief legal officers of our states we are contemplating a legal challenge to this provision and we ask you to take action to render this challenge unnecessary by striking that provision," they ask. The letter was signed by top prosecutors in Alabama, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Michigan, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington state. A conference committee begins meeting next year to work out a compromise between House and Senate versions of the bill and they will decide whether to keep this provision and abortion funding in the final bill.
California Pro-Life Group's Office Suffers Break-In, Opponents Suspected
Sacramento, CA (LifeNews.com) -- While the pro-life advocates at the Capitol Resource Institute pro-family group in California spent this past Christmas weekend with family and friends, their opponents appear to have broken into their office. Tim LeFever, the head of the group, shares the update with LifeNews.com. "Despite extensive security precautions, Capitol Resource Institute's Sacramento office was broken into over the holiday weekend. While staff was away with family, some took the opportunity to vandalize and take things of value. Unfortunately, it does not appear that this was a random entry in search of electronics and cash. Those responsible for this act apparently spent time poring through files and other things with little street value," he explained. "CRI is not too worried that our opponents may have gained a glimpse of our strategy; we are pretty up front about what we do and why we do it. But we take this as another sad reminder of the dynamics of the battle we are in. Opponents of our family friendly agenda have not limited their opposition to conventional education or activism. Our web site has been hacked, our signs and literature destroyed, and our staff has received threats of violence. It is a tribute to the determination of the staff and supporters of CRI, and the importance of this work, that CRI has not backed down. Each attack has been met with a renewed commitment to push on."
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Arizona Pro-Life Advocate Named One of Decades Ten Most Influential Residents
Phoenix, AZ (LifeNews.com) -- The Arizona Capitol Times has named Center for Arizona Policy president Cathi Herrod one of the Decade's Ten Most Influential Arizonans. The pro-life advocate is being recognized in a distinguished list that includes Senator John McCain, former Governor Janet Napolitano, and ASU President Michael Crow. "As leader of the social conservative Center for Arizona Policy," the article states, "Herrod has successfully shaped state policy on some of the most divisive issues of the last decade. Whether it was her efforts to restrict abortion or the successful ballot measure in 2008 defining marriage between a man and a woman, Herrod has tirelessly led the fight." The Center for Arizona Policy has been leading the fight with other pro-life groups in the state of Arizona for years to stop abortions and protect the rights of pro-life advocates.
New Zealand Right to Life: Family Planning Doesn't Justify Abortion Drug Use
Wellington, New Zealand (LifeNews.com) -- The following update comes from New Zealand Right to Life: "The New Zealand Family Planning Association on 8 December issued a statement in defense of the use of the lethal drug, Mifegyne, RU 486 for the killing of unborn children in the first 9 weeks of pregnancy. The Association, an ardent advocate for a culture of death sought to refute recent press releases of Right to Life and other pro-life organizations. Family Planning claims that medical abortions are safe. Medical abortions are unsafe for unborn children who are the weakest and most de fenceless members of the human family. It is always wrong to kill the innocent. Right to Life believes that Family Planning have a complete disregard for the human rights of unborn children and for the protection of their lives. Family Planning claims that medical abortions are safe for women and that there have been worldwide, only 12 reported maternal deaths. This figure is questioned. There is believed to be substantial underreporting as doctors are very reluctant to indicate on a death certificate that the death of the mother was the result of having an abortion. Why is Family Planning in complete denial of the physical and psychological damage inflicted on women as a result of having an abortion?"
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