|A Publication of the Republican National Coalition for Life||Sept/Oct 1997 - No. 18|
Senator Jesse Helms: A Lesson in Principled Leadership
Weld Withdraws Nomination as Ambassador to Mexico
Former Governor of Massachusetts William Weld, an advocate of abortion on demand, has abandoned his campaign to be named Ambassador to Mexico. Weld said he was going to make the issue a fight for the soul of the Republican Party, to which Senator Helms, who refused to hold a hearing on the nomination based on Weld's liberal record, replied, "let him try." Despite massive pressure to relent, Senator Helms held firm, pointing out that at least 154 nominations in the last 10 years had died without a hearing, including dozens of nominations that died in the Judiciary Committee when Senator Joe Biden was chairman. In the end, Senator Helms enjoyed a major victory when Weld withdrew. Thank you, Senator Helms, for your consistency, for your fearless leadership, and for sparing our country from an Ambassador who would have been in lock-step with the anti-life, radical environmental agenda of the United Nations.
Michael Reagan, political commentator, nationally syndicated talk radio host and son of former President Ronald Reagan issued a statement on September 15 in response to Weld's announcement that he has asked President Clinton to withdraw his name from consideration for the
position. The statement included the following excerpts:
"It's nice to see some Republicans still have a backbone. Jesse Helms showed himself to be the leader that he is. And Trent Lott supported the right person on this issue from Day One. Not only did Bill Clinton go about this nomination wrong, but he nominated the wrong person with the wrong record on drugs, and Jesse Helms and Trent Lott stood firm and said 'no'.
"There are a lot of people in the Republican leadership, like Dick Lugar, who would have caved in. Maybe the leadership should look at Jesse Helms and ask why he can stand up to the pressure and they can't.
"It is actions like these by Sen. Helms and Sen. Lott who stood for principle in the heat of a political battle, that appeal to grassroots Americans. If Republicans will show by their actions that they will stand on principle, they will go a long way toward rebuilding the grassroots Reagan coalition and taking back the White House."
Two abortion-related amendments to the Foreign Operations appropriations bill were debated in the House on September 4. The amendment, authored by pro-life stalwart Reps. Chris Smith (R-NJ), James Barcia (D-MI), Henry Hyde (R-IL), and James Oberstar (D-MN), restored what has become known as the "Mexico City" policy initiated during the Reagan administration and nullified by President Bill Clinton on inauguration day, January 22, 1993. The amendment, which passed 234-191, prohibits U.S. taxpayer funding for population assistance programs that directly or indirectly promote or perform abortions in any foreign country, except where the life of the mother is in grave danger, or in cases of forcible rape or incest. It also prohibits funding of organizations that work to overturn pro-life laws in other countries.
The other amendment supported by RNC/Life, was introduced by Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) who is also an obstetrician-gynecologist. It would stop all funding for population suppression programs around the world. The Paul amendment would free American taxpayers from being forced, through their tax dollars, to pay for any abortions whatsoever and is consistent with the Republican Party principle that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed, a principle that does not discriminate against babies conceived in rape or incest. It further recognized that while it may be necessary to separate an unborn baby from his mother if her life is threatened, current medical technology ensures that it is never necessary to deliberately kill the baby.
The Paul amendment also calls into question the practice of paying hundreds of millions of dollars to dispense dangerous drugs like oral "contraceptives," Depo-Provera, and Norplant, and devices like IUDs to women in developing nations around the world. It is well known that IUDs cause early abortions, but is not as widely known that the powerful drugs in question are known to work in two ways; 1.) sometimes they prevent conception and 2.) sometimes conception takes place and they cause a very early abortion. Medical experts believe that abortion-causing drugs being sold as contraceptives are responsible for millions of chemical abortions a year.
We were pleased by the vote, which clearly shows a strong pro-life base in Congress. 132 pro-life Republicans and 15 Democrats voted for the Paul amendment for a total of 147. In addition, two Republican pro-lifers who were listed as voting NO, Reps. Helen Chenoweth (R-ID) and Don Young (R-AK), assured us they made a mistake and have filed the necessary papers to change their votes to YES, which we expect will be reflected in the Congressional Record, making the total 149.
We hope to work with pro-life Republicans who voted against the Paul Amendment to help them understand that, as long as international population suppression agencies are dispensing dual-action oral contraceptives, Depo-Provera, Norplant and IUDs in the name of "family planning", we are paying for abortions. You can help by letting them know your views.
The Istook/Manzullo amendment to Title X was defeated in the House during consideration of the Labor/HHS/Education Appropriations Bill. The amendment requires written consent or proof of actual notice from a parent or guardian before a minor can receive contraceptive/abortifacient drugs or devices at a federally funded "family planning" clinic. The recent case of a McHenry, Illinois gym teacher who held a 13/14-year-old girl in sexual bondage for 18 months points up the urgency of this amendment. The 38 year-old-man concealed his abuse of the girl from her parents and others by taking her to a Title X clinic where she was injected with the powerful contraceptive/abortion-causing drug Depo-Provera on three occasions. The clinic aided and abetted the sexual abuse of a child, behavior which is not only legal under Title X, but paid for by the taxpayers. The amendment also requires that Title X clinics report any evidence of child abuse, child molestation, sexual abuse, rape or incest. A meaningless substitute amendment offered by Planned Parenthood supporters, Reps. John Porter (R-IL) and Mike Castle (R-DE), passed instead.
In 1994 a California couple hired a surrogate mother to bear them a child who was conceived through anonymous donations of sperm and egg. One month before the baby girl was born, the husband, John Buzzanca of Costa Mesa, filed for divorce and since then has been paying his ex-wife, Luanne, $386 a month for support of the child, now two years old. Mr. Buzzanca, claiming that he never legally became the child's father, sued to be relieved of his financial responsibility to her. In a ruling made public Monday, September 9, Orange County Superior Court Judge Robert D. Monarch said Mr. Buzzanca no longer has to pay child support, and that Ms. Buzzanca isn't entitled to be declared the legal mother at this time. The decision effectively leaves the child without legal parents. Jeffrey W. Doeringer an attorney representing the girl, commented, "Everyone needs to have legal parents, so why should one of the intended parents get off the hook when he helped to create her?" (Dallas Morning News, 9/8/97) Who can doubt that our society has spun into cultural chaos?
Indiana - The Indiana Supreme Court this week will begin hearing arguments on whether an infant born with severe birth defects should have been born at all. The parents of the infant who died after four months of life, are suing a genetic counselor for failing to warn them about the baby's defects. Had they known, they would have had an abortion. (Washington Times, 9/8/97)
Mississippi - The good news is that Mississippi's 24-hour waiting period appears to be paying off in dramatically fewer abortions in the state. The decline was 1,210, lowering the abortion death toll from 7,801 to 6,591. The figures show an overall decline not accounted for by women who traveled to other states to obtain an abortion, or those who waited longer to abort. (Life Advocacy Briefing #4-35, 9/l/97)
Washington - Pro-life congressional leaders Senator Jesse Helms (R-NC) and Rep. Henry Hyde (R-IL) have endorsed Rep. Linda Smith (WA-3) in her race for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by pro-abortion Democrat, Patty Murray. Meanwhile, Rep. George Nethercutt (WA-5) is still considering entering the primary against her, a move being encouraged by establishment Republicans who are uncomfortable with her uncompromising position that legal protection of the right to life must be restored to innocent unborn babies, and her support for campaign finance reform.
New Jersey Pro-Life Demonstrators
Texas - The New York-based Center for Reproductive Law and Policy, an abortion-advocacy law firm, has filed a suit claiming that under the Texas Constitution, taxpayers must pay for Medicaid abortions. Their claims are based, in part, on the Texas Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) which passed in 1973, and also on the so-called right to privacy. Greater Austin Right To Life, which has prepared a brief in the case, says if Texas loses the suit, there could be 4,000 to 8,000 Medicaid abortions every year costing the taxpayers an estimated $1,200,000.
Wisconsin May Protect Pro-Life Pharmacists - Pro-Life Wisconsin announced in July that a bill that will recognize and respect the lights and consciences of all pharmacists, especially those who respect the sanctity of human life, has been introduced in the Legislature by State Rep. Scott Walker (R-Wauwatosa). Our friends in Wisconsin are working to secure co-sponsors for the bill. Time Magazine, in its April 28 issue, reported that "a recent survey of 625 pharmacists showed that 82% of them believe they have the right to refuse to fill a prescription for a drug such as RU-486 that would facilitate abortions. A new era of conscientious objection may be dawning."
It is now possible to test unborn babies for at least 200 inherited conditions. In cases where there is a chance to cure a disease or correct an abnormality, this can be a great blessing. But, for many conditions for which there is no cure as yet, such testing can amount to a search-and-destroy mission. Pro-life people must be aware that genetic testing without the hope of a cure will be used for the purpose of recommending abortion. According to USA Today, 8/15/97, "at least half the women who learn their fetuses have serious genetic disorders will end their pregnancies. Furthermore, the degree to which an unborn baby may be affected is often not conclusively learned until after birth. In addition, the procedure, called amniocentesis, is itself dangerous to the baby in some cases. Insurance companies and health care organizations must be prevented, by law, from requiring genetic testing of unborn babies as a condition of coverage or treatment."
Republican National Coalition for Life Box 618 Alton Illinois 62002|
618-462-5415 Fax: 618-462-8909 E-mail