Catholic Bishops Celebrate Defeating Democrats’ Pro-Abortion Bill: This Saves “Millions of Unborn Lives”

National   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Mar 1, 2022   |   4:37PM   |   Washington, DC

Catholic leaders expressed “tremendous relief” Monday after the U.S. Senate rejected a radical pro-abortion bill that would have forced states to legalize abortions up to birth.

Catholic News Service reports Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore and Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York said the misleadingly named Women’s Health Protection Act was an “extreme” bill that would have led to the deaths of millions of unborn babies.

“We must respect and support mothers, their unborn children and the consciences of all Americans,” Lori and Dolan said in a joint statement after the Senate vote. The bill “would have led to the loss of millions of unborn lives and left countless women to suffer from the physical and emotional trauma of abortion,” they continued.

Democrat leaders and many mainstream news outlets portrayed 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 said the bill would go beyond Roe by getting rid of state laws that protect unborn babies from late-term and partial-birth abortions, bans on taxpayer funding for abortions, informed consent, parental consent and more.

Ahead of the vote, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops also spoke out against the bill, warning that it also would jeopardize religious freedom and conscience rights.

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“H.R. 3755 also would have compelled all Americans to support abortions here and abroad with their tax dollars,” the bishops said in a statement. “[It] would have also likely forced health care providers and professionals to perform, assist in, and/or refer for abortion against their deeply held beliefs, as well as forced employers and insurers to cover or pay for abortion.”

Lori and Dolan, who lead the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops committees on life and religious liberty, said the bill failed women as well as unborn babies, according to CNS.

“Rather than providing comprehensive material and social support for a challenging pregnancy, H.R. 3755 fails women and young girls in need by instead offering a free abortion as the ‘solution’ to their difficulty,” they said. “Women deserve better than this. We implore Congress to promote policies that recognize the value and human dignity of both mother and child.”

Lori and Dolan also mentioned how the bishops and lay Catholics are working to help mothers and babies in need. The bishops recently began the “Walking with Moms in Need” program, which encourages Catholic parishes to provide “a safety net to ensure that pregnant and parenting moms have the resources, love and support they need to nurture the lives of their children,” according to the report.

On Monday, the Senate voted to reject the pro-abortion Women’s Health Protection Act. All Republicans and one Democrat, U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, voted against the bill.

Previously, Lori and Dolan said the bill was “built on a false and despairing narrative” that aborting an unborn baby is the “only, or best, solution to a crisis pregnancy.”

“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.

Pro-life advocates nicknamed the bill the Abortion Without Limits Up to Birth Act. If it had passed, it 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 other words, it would have overturned all federal and state pro-life laws and prohibit elected officials from even introducing pro-life legislation.

All Senate Republicans voted against cloture on the radical pro-abortion bill and all Democrats voted pro-abortion for cloture, except for Manchin. Democrats Feinstein, Lujan and Warnock missed the vote but would have voted pro-abortion while Republicans Inhofe, Kennedy and Paul also missed vote but would have voted pro-life.