Tag Archives: House Judiciary Committee

House Judiciary Committee Passes ‘No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act’

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FAMILY RESEARCH COUNCIL LOGOWASHINGTON, Jan. 15, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Today the House Judiciary Committee approved by a 22 to 12 vote H.R. 7, the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” authored by U.S. Reps. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.). This bipartisan bill would permanently prohibit taxpayer dollars from being used to pay for abortions.

Family Research Council Director for the Center for Human Dignity Arina Grossu responded with the following comments:

“This is a victory for women, their unborn children, and taxpayers who should not be forced by the government to pay for someone else’s abortion.

“We applaud the passage of this bi-partisan pro-life legislation to remove abortion funding from Obamacare and apply the long-standing Hyde Amendment across the government. Most Americans, regardless of their view on abortion, oppose government funding for the atrocity of abortion. The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act restores government neutrality on abortion by removing government funding for abortion and yet allows private health insurance to cover abortion.

“We also know that government funding for abortion will increase the number of abortions, a prospect troubling to all but a handful of Americans.  With the Obamacare rollout, it has become clear that many health plans being subsidized by the government cover elective abortion. Even more incredible is that Obamacare requires an abortion surcharge, which in most cases is not even revealed to consumers shopping for a health care plan.

“One member at last week’s hearing falsely claimed that the Hyde amendment fully prevented government funding of abortion.  However, Hyde does not apply to the nation’s capital and the provision stopping abortion funding in D.C. was repealed in 2010.  As a result, Americans have paid to abort hundreds of unborn children at a total cost of $185,000 in taxpayer funds.  Hyde applies to other funding streams, not the District. Although this abortion funding restriction for the District was restored in 2011, these taxpayer-funded abortions demonstrate how the annual funding restrictions on abortion are tenuous. The passage of H.R. 7 would make this abortion-funding restriction permanent along with other government abortion-funding provisions. It’s time to permanently remove government funding for abortion,” concluded Grossu.

House Panel Probes Pain, Abortion-to-Birth Policy in D.C.

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U.S. House Panel to Examine Policy of Legal Abortion Until Birth in Nation’s Capital; Bill Would Ban Abortion of Pain-Capable Unborn Children in the Federal District

WASHINGTON, May 17, 2012 /Christian Newswire— The U.S. House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Constitution today will hold a hearing examining the policy of legal abortion until birth currently in effect in the nation’s capital, and an NRLC-backed bill that would protect unborn children in the federal District after they have reached 20 weeks fetal age, based on their capacity to experience pain.

The bill, the District of Columbia Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 3803), is patterned on an NRLC-originated model bill that has already been enacted in six states.  It currently has 194 House cosponsors.

“Many states are moving to protect pain-capable unborn children, with Georgia joining the list just this month,” said NRLC Legislative Director Douglas Johnson.  “But with respect to the nation’s capital, which the Constitution makes an exclusively federal jurisdiction, it is Congress that has the immediate responsibility to act.  Any lawmaker who votes against this bill is voting to ratify the current District policy, under which abortion is legal without limitation to the moment of birth.”

“The Constitution makes it crystal clear that the responsibility rests solely with Congress, and with the President,” Johnson said, noting that Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution provides that Congress shall “exercise exclusive jurisdiction in all cases whatsoever, over such District . . .”

Johnson added, “This legislation is NRLC’s top congressional priority for 2012.  NRLC does not regard its House scorecard for the 112th Congress as complete until the House has voted on this bill — but lawmakers can vote early by cosponsoring the bill, and 194 have already done so.  A vote against H.R. 3803 will be scored by NRLC as a vote to ratify a policy of unlimited legal abortion until the moment of birth in the nation’s capital.”

H.R. 3803 was introduced by Congressman Trent Franks (R-Az.), who is also the chairman of the Subcommittee on the Constitution.  In the bill, Congress adopts “findings” (declarations of fact) that by 20 weeks after fertilization (if not earlier), the unborn child has the capacity to experience great pain.  The bill then prohibits abortion after that point, except when an acute physical condition endangers the life of the mother.  The abortion method most often used at this stage, the “D&E,” is depicted in a medical illustration posted here.

The Judiciary Committee will offer a live internet feed of the hearing, scheduled for 4 PM EDT, atjudiciary.house.gov/hearings/Hearings%202012/hear_05172012_2.html

Testifying at today’s hearing will be Dr. Anthony Levatino, an obstetrician-gynecologist who at one time performed many D&E abortions but who now opposes abortion; Dr. Colleen Malloy, a neonatologist from Northwestern University who will testify regarding the pain perception capacities of babies who are born very prematurely, and of unborn children; and Dr. Byron Calhoun, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at West Virginia University-Charleston specializing in maternal and fetal medicine, who will testify regarding humane medical approaches to cases in which unborn children are diagnosed with genetic disorders or other serious medical conditions.  Also testifying will be an opponent of the bill, Christy Zink of Washington, D.C., who had an abortion after learning that her unborn son had a malformed brain.

On May 15, Eleanor Holmes Norton (D), delegate to the House for the District of Columbia, issued a press release complaining that she was not allowed to testify at today’s hearing.  NRLC’s Johnson commented: “The Democrats on the committee could have invited anybody they wanted to fill their witness slot.  The Democrats apparently decided Norton was not their strongest witness, so they invited somebody else, and then issued complaints that Norton was excluded — just another phony controversy, manufactured for Rachel Maddow and the blogosphere.”

The NRLC website contains much documentation on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and on the scientific evidence that unborn children, by 20 weeks if not before, have the capacity to experience great pain, here.

Identical legislation (S. 2103) has been introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah).