U.S. Catholic bishops spoke out again this week against a radical pro-abortion bill slated for a vote in the U.S. Senate, calling it a “violation of human rights.”
In a letter to the U.S. Senate, Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore and Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York slammed the deceptively-named Women’s Health Protection Act for treating the killing of unborn babies in abortions as the moral equivalent to health care, Crux reports.
Abortion is “the opposite of health care and is an extreme violation of human rights,” the bishops told Senate leaders. “We strongly urge you to reject this bill and to put the energy and resources of our federal government behind policies that fully recognize and support both mothers and their children.”
Democrat leaders and many mainstream news outlets portray the bill as an effort to simply “codify the right to an abortion” across the U.S. in response to the likelihood that the Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade this year. But pro-life leaders say the bill would go beyond Roe by nullifying state laws that protect unborn babies from late-term and partial-birth abortions and forcing taxpayers to pay for abortions.
Lori and Dolan, who lead the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops committees on life and religious liberty, said the bill is “built on a false and despairing narrative” that aborting an unborn baby is the “only, or best, solution to a crisis pregnancy,” according to the report.
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“In treating abortion as the moral equivalent to the removal of an appendix, this proposal is radically out of step with the American public,” the bishops continued. “Answering the needs of women by promoting taxpayer-funded elective abortion, as this bill would do, is a failure to love and serve women. Offering free or low-cost abortions, instead of the resources needed to care for her child, is not ‘choice’ but coercion.”
Polls consistently show that a strong majority of Americans support strong limits on abortion, especially after the first trimester, and oppose taxpayer funding for abortions.
Despite wide-spread public opposition, the bill passed the House last year. However, it is not expected to pass the Senate, which Democrats control by only a narrow majority. A vote is scheduled for Monday.
In their letter, Lori and Dolan urged the Senate to reject the abortion expansion and focus instead on policies that help mothers and children, born and unborn.
“As a nation built on the recognition that every human being is endowed by its Creator with the unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, we must reject this bill and embrace public policy that fully respects and facilitates these rights and needs of both mother and child,” they said.
Along with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, many pro-life organizations also are urging the Senate to reject the radical bill. Many are calling it the Abortion Without Limits Up To Birth Act.
If passed, the bill would:
- Eliminate all state and federal parental consent laws in relation to abortion
- Eliminate all state informed consent laws, including those that allow women to view an ultrasound prior to abortion
- Prevent states from passing laws to protect babies at 20 weeks, thereby joining countries like North Korea, China, Vietnam, Singapore, Canada, and the Netherlands in not protecting unborn children later in development
- Force doctors and nurses opposed to abortion to lose their jobs, and Catholic hospitals could lose public funds unless they perform abortions
- Eliminate decades-long limitations on direct taxpayer funding of abortion – including the popular Hyde Amendment, which has saved more than 2 million lives since enacted
In short, the legislation would overturn all federal and state pro-life laws and prohibit elected officials from even introducing pro-life legislation.
Even among many Democrat voters, the bill is too extreme. Polls consistently show that a strong majority of Americans oppose late-term abortions and taxpayer-funded abortions. A 2022 Marist poll found that just 36 percent of Americans believe abortions should be legal without any restrictions. Additionally, 73 percent oppose using tax dollars to fund abortions.
Similarly, a 2021 Associated Press poll found that 65 percent believe second-trimester abortions should be illegal and 80 percent believe they should be illegal in the third trimester.