Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Rep. Tim Ryan's Bishop Opposes Ryan-DeLauro Planned Parenthood Bailout

Youngstown Bishop George Murry, S.J. released a statement today opposing his parishioner Rep. Tim Ryan's (D-OH) attempt to derail a truly common ground approach to reducing abortion.

Ryan, who has a 0 percent rating from the National Right to Life, introduced the Preventing Unintended Pregnancies, Reducing the Need for Abortion and Supporting Parents Act (H.R. 3312) on July 23 along with pro-abort Rep. Rosa DeLauro. The bill, which masquerades as a common ground approach to reducing abortion, has been exposed as nothing more than a Planned Parenthood Bailout Bill on this blog and the USCCB Pro-Life Office has dubbed it the Planned Parenthood Economic Stimulus Package of 2009.

The bill which has support from NARAL, Planned Parenthood and a rogues' gallery of pro-abort pols is a sort of trial balloon for the president's eventual abortion reduction plan. Unfortunately, it is also serving to undermine an excellent common ground approach to reducing abortion sponsored by Democrats for Life of America - an approach once favored by Ryan.

Here is the release from Bishop Murry's office:

Bishop George Murry, S.J., of the Catholic Diocese of Youngstown has voiced his opposition to Congressman Tim Ryan’s bill, Preventing Unintended Pregnancies, Reducing the Need for Abortion and Supporting Parents Act (H.R. 3312). “This act is based on the mistaken belief that greater access to contraception reduces abortions and, in addition, some contraceptives may have an abortifacient effect,” said Bishop Murry. “Numerous studies as well as life experiences have shown that taxpayer support of contraception does not reduce unintended pregnancies and abortions. For example, a 2006 study by the Alan Guttmacher Institute presents evidence that those States which are aggressive in promoting contraception also have the highest abortion rates.”

Bishop Murry encouraged support for another bill currently before Congress, the Pregnant Women Support Act (S. 1032, H.R. 2035). The Pregnant Women Support Act makes adoption tax credits permanent, provides grants for ultrasound equipment, increases funding for domestic violence prevention programs, and ends discriminatory practices against women in the health insurance industry. “Certainly, this is a common sense approach to helping women in the decision to choose life for their babies,” said Bishop Murry. “I urge Congressman Ryan’s support for this piece of legislation.”

For more information from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ position on these bills, visit www.cathdoy.org.

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Do follow the link to the Diocese of Youngstown. The have a number of excellent resources explaining why contraception does not reduce abortion rates, as well as some good background information on the USCCB-endorsed Pregnant Women Support Act, excerpt:
BACKGROUND

The Pregnant Women Support Act (H.R. 2035 and S. 1032) is a common-sense solution that people on all sides of the political debate can support. All of us should prevent women from being pressured toward abortion in this country and to offer concrete help to mothers and young children. The Pregnant Women Support Act would provide information and resources to help pregnant women continue their pregnancy and parent a new child. The bill would also fund the collection and reporting of abortion surveillance data.

The Pregnant Women Support Act will support women by:

• Establishing a toll-free number to direct women to places that will provide support during and following their pregnancy;
• Funding collection of accurate data on abortion;
• Providing child care to low income and student parents;
• Providing parenting education in maternity group homes and pregnancy centers;
• Improving adoption assistance;
• Ensuring that pregnant women are not denied health care by insurance companies and that coverage is continued for newborns;
• Codifying the regulation that extends coverage under the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) to low-income pregnant women and unborn children;
• Improving services for pregnant women who are victims of domestic violence;
• Increasing funding for the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Nutrition Program;
• Providing grants to institutions of higher education to fund pregnant and parenting student services;
• Providing new mothers with free home visits by registered nurses.

USCCB POSITION

Catholic teaching affirms the right to life for every person- born and unborn- and insists every life is sacred and has inherent dignity. The Bishops’ Conference consistently and unequivocally supports laws and programs that encourage childbirth and adoption over abortion and that work to address poverty, provide health care, and offer other assistance to pregnant women, children, and families.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has worked closely with lawmakers to seek passage of the Pregnant Women Support Act. The Bishops’ Conference has said “By providing practical resources and information, the bill will empower pregnant women to make healthy choices for themselves and their children, born and unborn…The Pregnant Women’s Support Act is truly a common-ground initiative to reduce the number of abortions in the United States…Everyone can agree that no woman should choose abortion under financial duress or because she is threatened by domestic violence during her pregnancy.”

ACTION

Contact your Representative and Senators and urge them to co-sponsor the Pregnant Women Support Act (H.R. 2035 or S. 1032). All member of Congress should hear from their constituents that reducing the number of abortions in the United States and supporting vulnerable mothers and their children should be a national priority.
There are currently 39 House co-sponsors of the Pregnant Women Support Act and 41 co-sponsors of the Ryan-DeLauro Bill.

It is also time for prolifers to put pressure on prolife Republicans to co-sponsor PWSA. That it is originally sponsored by prolife Dems should not be an excuse to stay away from it. There are a few Republican co-sponsors, including Chris Smith (R-NJ) and my new political hero Ahn "Joseph" Cao (R-LA). If the other Repubs are truly prolife, they'd drop political considerations and sign up for PWSA now.