LifeNews.com Pro-Life News Report
Thursday, February 18, 2010
|For pro-life news updated throughout the day, visit LifeNews.com.|
• Democrats May Lack Reconciliation Votes to Push Pro-Abortion Health Care Bill
• Poll: Majority Say Obama, Pro-Abortion Democrats Don't Deserve Re-Election
• Pro-Abortion Obama Faith Advisor Harry Knox Reaffirms Catholic Church Bashing
• NARAL Report Gives United States D on Promoting Abortion, Up Since Obama
• Geron Application for Human Embryonic Stem Cell Trials Timed for Obama Okay
• Pro-Life Leaders Sign Mount Vernon Statement Expressing Conservative Values
• Mike Huckabee Releases New Statement Confirming He's Pro-Life on Abortion
• Missouri House Committee Cuts Funding for State Abortion Alternatives Program
• Virginia House and Senate OK Pro-Abortion License Plates, Funding Battle Next
• Kansas House Approves Amendment to Ban Insurance Coverage of Abortion
• Woman Who Threatened Pro-Lifers With Knife at Abortion Center Keeps Baby
• Mississippi Pro-Life Advocates Submit Signatures for Personhood-Abortion Amdt
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Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Congressional Democrats are looking at the reconciliation process as a means of railroading the pro-abortion health care bill through Congress. However, a look at the members of the party who may not support reconciliation finds Democrats can't lose any more than two of 11 lawmakers who are on the fence.
The White House is convening a health care summit next week but Republicans say they don't expect pro-abortion President Barack Obama and Democrats to start over on the pro-abortion health care bill.
Instead, political observers believe Democrats will try to use the reconciliation idea to have the House approve the Senate bill and a second bill approved by both chambers that makes changes to it.
That second bill, under terms of the process, would only need a 51-member majority vote instead of 60 to overcome a filibuster in the Senate. That means 50 votes and pro-abortion Vice President Joe Biden breaking the tie.
A new article in Salon finds Senate Leader Harry Reid will need to put pressure on 11 Democrats to make sure they stick with the reconciliation process. Full story at LifeNews.com
Poll: Majority Say Obama, Pro-Abortion Democrats Don't Deserve Re-Election
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- New polls indicate a majority of Americans say both pro-abortion President Barack Obama and the pro-abortion Democrats who control both houses of Congress don't deserve re-election.
With abortion advocates running the White House and Congress, Americans could be on the verge of funding hundreds of thousands of abortions through a government-run health care bill.
A new CNN poll published late Tuesday finds 52 percent of Americans said President Barack Obama doesn't deserve reelection in 2012. CNN found just 44 percent of all Americans would vote to reelect Obama in 2012 -- eight percent fewer than those who said they prefer someone else.
That 52-44 percent margin against Obama came in results when CNN surveyed both American adults as a whole and registered voters. Results among only likely voters would probably yield a larger gap against Obama.
Looking at Obama's approval rating, 50 percent of Americans disapprove of his performance in the White House while 49 percent approve.
The CNN poll, conducted February 12-15, also found Americans split 47-45 percent on whether they would favor a Republican or a Democrat for Congress this year with a slightly higher percentage saying they favor the GOP. Full story at LifeNews.com
Pro-Abortion Obama Faith Advisor Harry Knox Reaffirms Catholic Church Bashing
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Harry Knox, the former staffer of a pro-abortion organization who now serves on President Barack Obama's Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, has re-affirmed his bashing of the Catholic Church in a new interview.
Knox has been the subject of concern for pro-life groups since Obama named him to the panel.
He is the director of the religion and faith program at Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights group known for its strong abortion advocacy as well.
Knox came under fire for attacking the Pope, who recently said that condoms are not the answer to the AIDS/HIV crisis in Africa. He called Pope Benedict XVI a liar and said he should "start telling the truth about condom use" and claimed the Catholic leader was "endangering people s lives" and "hurting people in the name of Jesus."
In a new interview with CNS News, Knox refused to back down from the comments.
When asked whether he still holds that view, Knox said, "I do." Full story at LifeNews.com
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- The pro-abortion group NARAL has issued a new nationwide report grading the country and each state on its promotion of abortion. Since President Barack Obama took over the White House, NARAL says the nation's pro-abortion grade has improved from a "D-" to a "D."
"For pro-choice Americans, 2009 was a roller-coaster ride," NARAL president Nancy Keenan says in a statement accompanying the report.
"On the one hand, we saw positive changes in policies that will make a difference," she continued. "On the other hand, anti-choice politicians used health reform to advance destructive and divisive attacks on women's access to abortion coverage."
NARAL credits Obama with compiling an extensive pro-abortion record that "began to undo eight years of damage" under the administration of President George W. Bush, who protected pro-life advocates from funding abortions and abortion promotion with taxpayer dollars.
Looking at the individual states, NARAL notes: "In 2009, 14 states and Washington, D.C. enacted 21 pro-choice measures" while "14 states enacted 29 anti-choice measures."
"Every time we take a step forward, we will face unrelenting resistance from anti-choice politicians who will sink to new lows to undermine [abortion]," Keenan lamented. Full story at LifeNews.com
Geron Application for Human Embryonic Stem Cell Trials Timed for Obama Okay
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- A new report indicates the application Geron Corporation submitted to the FDA to become the first to engage in human trials of embryonic stem cells was timed with a trigger to make it so it would be considered during the Obama administration. The cloning company worried it would not be approved during the administration of President George W. Bush.
Just days after Obama took office, the FDA suddenly decided to approve Geron's application for the controversial study.
Approval came even though embryonic stem cells have yet to overcome two major hurdles -- including immune system rejection issues and their tendency to form tumors.
The FDA insisted the timing of the approval was coincidental, saying it merely approved Geron's application 30 days after the agency received it, but new reports reveal that's not the case.
Mark Henderson, a Times writer, says Geron's chief executive, Tom Okar, met him in London this week and provided more details about how the process took place.
Henderson writes Okar "revealed that the announcement was deliberately planned for the immediate aftermath of President Obama's inauguration. But it was the company, not the FDA, which set this in motion: Geron deliberately timed its application so it would be decided just after President Bush left office, so that the Obama Administration would be able to announce it." Full story at LifeNews.com
Pro-Life Leaders Sign Mount Vernon Statement Expressing Conservative Values
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- A gathering of pro-life leaders made the Mount Vernon Statement official today as they signed a new policy document setting forth conservative values -- including protecting the right to life. As LifeNews.com reported yesterday, the signers read like a who's who of the pro-life movement.
The document mentions the right to life in saying, ""The conservatism of the Declaration asserts self-evident truths based on the laws of nature and nature's God. It defends life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."
Senator Jim DeMint, one of the top pro-life lawmakers in the Senate, signed on to the document today as well.
I fully support the Mount Vernon Statement as a vital recommitment to our Constitution and the liberty it was written to protect. If our leaders cannot agree to these fundamental American principles, they are part of the problem and should be replaced," he said in a statement sent to LifeNews.com.
He said "our Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution to limit our federal government's ability to interfere with our lives. Unfortunately, many of our elected leaders have forgotten this." Full story at LifeNews.com
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Mike Huckabee Releases New Statement Confirming He's Pro-Life on Abortion
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- Former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee released a statement today saying he is unequivocally pro-life on abortion. The timing of the statement comes as conservative leaders sign the Manhattan Statement and thousands of pro-life advocates gather for the CPAC conference.
"I have stated repeatedly, unequivocally, that I am pro-life. It is easy to get caught up in the nuances of exactly what that means. So I want to spell it out, as clearly and concisely as I can," Huckabee says.
In a post on the blog of his national political action committee, the potential 2012 presidential candidate says he agrees with the scientific fact that human life begins at conception.
"There is no doubt in my mind that life does begin at the point of conception. It does not begin when a judge, or an attorney, or a left wing activist group decides that it does," Huckabee writes. "Science determines that life begins 'when the male sperm and female egg join a new and unique life form is created.' Scientists don't say life begins at birth or viability. It begins at conception." Full story at LifeNews.com
Missouri House Committee Cuts Funding for State Abortion Alternatives Program
Jefferson City, MO (LifeNews.com) -- The Missouri state House has cut funding for the Alternatives to Abortion program (ATA) that provides a wide range of emergency services to women facing crisis pregnancies. On Tuesday, the House Committee on Mental Health, Health and Social Services recommended the complete elimination of funding.
Now, the House Budget Committee is considering the recommendation and pro-life advocates are working furiously to restore it.
"No one can dispute that times are hard and that state budget cuts are necessary," the Missouri Catholic Conference said in a statement today.
"However, the Missouri state budget totals over 23 billion dollars. Surely, in this multi-billion dollar budget, budget writers can find $1.9 million to preserve funding for alternatives to abortion," it added.
House Budget Committee chairman Allen Icet has instructed the six appropriations committese that take the first pass of the state budget to come up with suggestions on cutting spending that eliminating the pregnancy help money is one item on the chopping block. Full story at LifeNews.com
Virginia House and Senate OK Pro-Abortion License Plates, Funding Battle Next
Richmond, VA (LifeNews.com) -- The Virginia state House and state Senate have both signed off on a pro-abortion license plate sponsored by Planned Parenthood. Now the chambers will have to resolve differing amendments on whether or not the abortion business will get any of the money from the sales of the affinity plates.
As LifeNews.com reported, the state House approved the plates but not before a republican lawmaker won approval of an amendment to divert funding from Planned Parenthood to a state fund that helps pregnant women.
The Senate approved the bill for the "Trust Women/Respect Choice" plates but kept the funding headed to Planned Parenthood.
Now, both chambers will have to resolve the differences.
Del. Bob Brink, an Arlington Democrat who sponsored the bill in the House, told the Fredericksburg newspaper the amendment to yank the funding was "an action that discriminates against one particular group and its message" and one that "certainly would invite an expensive lawsuit." Full story at LifeNews.com
Kansas House Approves Amendment to Ban Insurance Coverage of Abortion
Topeka, KS (LifeNews.com) -- The Kansas state House has approved an amendment that would prohibit insurance companies from automatically covering abortions under their plans except in very rare instances. The language moves in the other direction from the Congressional health care bill that funds abortions.
Under the amendment, state residents who don't want their insurance premiums to pay for abortions would be protected and people who want to get abortions would pay for them with their own money by purchasing a rider for such coverage.
Rep. Peter DeGraaf, a Republican, proposed the language today and the state House signed off on it on a 73-45 vote.
"I don't think the rest of society should have to pay for abortions," DeGraaf said according to the Topeka Capital Journal. "I believe the insurance industry will respond to this need."
The debate on the measure produced a tenuous debate today as Reps. Cindy Neighbor, Marti Crow, and Annie Kuether, all Democrats, attacked DeGraaf for offering the amendment. Full story at LifeNews.com
Woman Who Threatened Pro-Lifers With Knife at Abortion Center Keeps Baby
Duluth, MN (LifeNews.com) -- A woman who faces assault charges after she pulled a knife on two pro-life advocates who encouraged her not to have an abortion has decided against having the planned abortion. Mechelle Tallulah Hall has pleaded guilty to second-degree assault but she has also decided to keep her baby.
Leah Winandy and other pro-life advocates were gathered outside the abortion business in Duluth when Hall approached the Building For Women abortion center.
Winandy told Hall she cared about her unborn child but the woman responded by reportedly brandishing a knife and held it to Winandy's throat.
The 26-year-old woman from Superior, Wisconsin plead guilty during a court hearing yesterday and admitted her crime under questioning from county prosecutor Nathaniel Stumme, according to the Duluth Tribune.
Public defender Laura Zimm told Judge David Johnson that details of the plea agreement Hall made with prosecutors would have her serving probation but no jail time.
The newspaper reached Hall at home afterwards and she said she has decided to have the baby and that she is happy the Winandys were present to persuade her otherwise. Full story at LifeNews.com
Mississippi Pro-Life Advocates Submit Signatures for Personhood-Abortion Amdt
Jackson, MS (LifeNews.com) -- In Mississippi yesterday, pro-life advocates submitted more than 130,000 signatures to get a personhood amendment on the state ballot. The amendment would define an unborn child as a human being starting at fertilization, but some legal observers say it will be overturned.
The amendment is the fourth ballot initiative since 1992 to fulfill the requirement of 89,285 voter signatures.
Personhood Mississippi sponsored the ballot drive and volunteers have been collecting signatures since February of last year.
The group informed LifeNews.com today that 105,000 of the submitted signatures were certified as valid by 82 different County Circuit Clerks. More than 2,000 volunteers and over 1,000 churches helped with the campaign. Lieutenant Governor Phil Bryant was present at yesterday's press conference, helping to turn in the boxes of completed petitions. Full story at LifeNews.com
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