by Steven Ertelt
September 15, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — A new bill sponsored by House Democrats may have some good provisions helping pregnant, but the measure contains other objectionable parts that made it so pro-life advocates oppose it. As a result, pro-life lawmakers and groups have said they won’t back the legislation.
Backed by a handful of Democrats, the new measure claims to be an attempt to reduce abortions, but some observers see it as an election-year ploy designed to get votes for pro-abortion candidates.
The measure drew initial support from Democrats for Life, a national group for pro-life Democrats, and the organization helped pro-life Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio craft the bill.
Provisions such as providing more funds for health care for pregnant women, increasing adoption tax credits and making sure all insurance plans cover pregnancies would help reduce the pressure some women face to have abortions.
But when Ryan determined to make sure the legislation promoted contraception and sex education programs and directed more funding to Planned Parenthood abortion businesses for family planning programs, Democrats for Life balked.
Kristen Day, executive director of the group, said that the organization’s goal is to help pregnant women but she thinks Ryan was more interested in promoting contraception.
Day told LifeNews.com that Democrats for Life will work with pro-life Rep. Lincoln Davis, a Tennessee Democrat, on a different measure that would provide more help for pregnant women.
“Congressman Ryan’s bill places more emphasis on contraception and Congressman Davis’ bill focuses on helping pregnant women," Day said.
"We share Davis’ belief that supporting women who find themselves in a crisis or unplanned pregnancy will do more to reduce the abortion rate than anything else. Too many women believe that abortion is their only option when they find themselves in an unplanned pregnanc.” Day added.
Davis plans to announce his measure next week, Day told LifeNews.com.
Meanwhile, Rep. Chris Smith, a New Jersey Republican who heads the pro-life caucus of lawmakers in the House, told the Copely News Service the Ryan bill would "lead to more abortions, not less" and said pro-life lawmakers won’t support it.
The big reason is because so much funding would go to abortion facilities. He found it hypocritical that federal funds would go to abortion centers where "in one room, they talk contraception, and in the other room, they kill your baby.”
The measure would fund teen pregnancy prevention programs that focus on so-called safe sex rather than abstinence.
Rep. James Oberstar, a Minnesota Democrat who is the co-chairman of the House Pro-Life Caucus, has said he will not support the bill either.
His spokeswoman Mary Kerr told Copely the family planning funding provisions will prevent most pro-life lawmakers from supporting it.
Ryan indicated he asked pro-life groups to support his bill but found no takers.
Another problem for pro-life advocates is the bill’s claim to notifying women considering an abortion about the medical risks associated with it. The pro-abortion College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, which has long opposed telling women of abortion’s dangers, will craft what information abortion practitioners would provide.
That means women will likely be let in the dark about abortion’s link to breast cancer, and the myriad of other medical and emotional problems that result from it.
Related web sites:
Democrats for Life of America – https://www.DemocratsForLife.Org