Catholic Bishops: Pro-Abortion Senate Health Care Bill "Worst We’ve Seen Yet"

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 20, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Catholic Bishops: Pro-Abortion Senate Health Care Bill "Worst We’ve Seen Yet"

by Steven Ertelt Editor
November 20
, 2009

Washington, DC ( — A pro-life spokesman for the nation’s Catholic bishops doesn’t mince words today an interview about the new Harry Reid health care bill in the Senate that contains massive abortion funding.

The bishops have taken a consistent pro-life stance against using government money for abortions and they say this bill is no exception when it comes to that problem.

Richard Doerflinger, associate director of the bishops’ conference Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities, told the Associated Press today that the Senate bill "is actually the worst bill we’ve seen so far on the life issues."

Doerflinger called it "completely unacceptable," adding that "to say this reflects current law is ridiculous."

The money to pay for abortions comes from the premiums taxpayers pay to the federal government. The phony Capps amendment added to the bill makes it so the funds are segregated but the government eventually uses those taxpayer dollars, through the public option and affordability credits, to pay for abortions.

Other leading pro-life groups like Americans United for Life, National Right to Life, the Family Research Council and Susan B. Anthony List have come to the same conclusion about the abortion funding in the Senate bill.

The rejection of the Senate bill comes as abortion advocates attack the Catholic bishops for having input on the abortion-health care debate.

Earlier this week, Rep. Diane DeGette, the head of the pro-abortion caucus in the House, came under fire for saying the pro-life leaders should not be involved.

"Last I heard, we had separation of church and state in this country," she said. "I’ve got to say that I think the Catholic bishops … shouldn’t have input."

The announcement that the Senate bill is pro-abortion is also the first major abortion announcement following the installation of Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, the Archbishop of Galveston-Houston, as the next head of the pro-life committee at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia, the current head of the pro-life committee at the USCCB, wrote several letters to members of Congress in advance of the votes.

And USCCB officials, under his direction, went as far as meeting with Speaker Nancy Pelosi in her office hours before the vote to guarantee that lawmakers would have a chance to vote to stop virtually all of the abortion funding.

With the bishops concluding their national meeting yesterday, Cardinal DiNardo is set to become their new pro-life leader.

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