"People of good will need their senators to oppose ardently pro abortion judicial nominess, such as Cornelia Pillard, Robert Wilkins, and Patricia Millett. It is deeply troubling that Senator Casey was among those who voted on November 21, "to take away the ability...to use filibusters against judicial nominees, including those pro-life groups oppose" (http://www.lifenews.com/2013/11/21/senate-democrats-break-rules-to-take-away-filibuster-on-judges-from-republicans/).
"We are deeply troubled by Senators Casey and Toomey voting for S 815, which the US Conference of Catholic Bishops says 'could be used to punish as discrimination what the Catholic Church teaches.' We need Representative Fitzpatrick to OPPOSE the house vesion, HR 1755.
"In the interest of basic human dignity - particularly the welfare of children - we need your CO-SPONSORSHIP/ SUPPORT of HR 3279, HR 732 / S32 / S369, HJ Res 51, HR 940 / S 1204, HR 3133, HR 7 / S 946, HR 1797 / S 1670 / S 886, and HR 301 / S 653, as well as HR 1091 / S 583, and HR 23.
"Further, we need you to work to de-fund Planned Parenthood and to achieve what the USCCB has called 'compassionate immigration reform.'"
Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act
of 2013 - Support HR 3279
Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2013 - Support HR 3279
Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act - Support HR 732 / S 32 / S 369
As the USCCB previously explained, "a mother in Pennsylvania, where parental involvement is required, testified before Congress that her daughter was taken without her knowledge to New Jersey for a secret abortion by the parents of her daughter's boyfriend. After contacting state police, she learned that nothing could be done to protect her parental rights.... 'We urge Congress to pass this law to help protect vulnerable girls from this kind of exploitation'" (USCCB, 4/27/05).
Though the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act has yet to become law, the 2/15/13 edition of Pa Pro Life On Line News dramatically highlighted the continued need: "Abortion facilities are luring vulnerable teens across state lines for abortions. Many states including Pennsylvania have laws that protect pregnant teens by making sure their parents are involved in the decision. However, there are states on our borders that do not have such protections in place. A look through yellow pages in phone books and online reveals that out of state abortion centers are targeting teens with ads that say they can get an abortions without telling their parents."
On Planned Parenthood's web site, you can enter a zip code to locate the closest of their so-called "health centers." If you enter "18977" (Washington's Crossing), "19030" (Fairless Hills), "19067" (Morrisville, Woodbourne, Woodside, and Yardley), their facilities on East State Street in Trenton (Unit 1 and Unit 2) will appear among the top three. Of those three, Planned Parenthood readily acknowledges providing "Abortion Services" at Unit 2. On a page devoted to Parental Consent and Notification Laws, Planned Parenthood indicates that "A judge can excuse you from" parental permission in Pennsylvania and that New Jersey has "no parental involvement requirement" (On Saturday mornings at 9:45 a.m., a Rosary and a Chaplet of Divine Mercy are prayed near Clinton and East State Streets in Trenton. On Thursday mornings from 8:30 to 9:30, the Rosary is prayed.).
Thank God for the reintroduction of the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act! "Federal lawmakers praised the reintroduction of a bill requiring parental notification to transport minors across state borders for an abortion....Earlier versions of the legislation passed the House of Representatives in previous years but failed in the Senate due to filibuster efforts opposing it (National Catholic Register, 2/18/13).
Kudos to Mike Fitzpatrick for being among the 112 co-sponsors of HR 732. NEITHER Bob Casey NOR Pat Toomey are among the 6 co-sponsors of S.32. However, kudos to Pat Toomey for being one of the 28 co-sponsors of S.369.
De-Fund Planned ParenthoodIn a 4/13/11 letter to the U.S. House of Representatives, Daniel Cardinal DiNardo, then chair of the USCCB's Committee on Pro-Life Activities, called for de-funding Planned Parenthood: "The current and future budget debate will involve hard choices and much shared sacrifice....Whether to fund the largest abortion network in the country is not one of those hard choices.” As per the American Life League's 2013 Study on Planned Parenthood Federation of America, "Tax funding PPFA is too often debated as an 'either-or' proposition, as if healthcare for underserved women and the poor depended on the decision ....With other choices available, neither the American taxpayer nor healthcare in general benefits by funding an organization dedicated (by choice) to abortion." Fitzpatrick, Casey, and Toomey need to work to de-fund Planned Parenthood.
Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 2013 (ENDA) - Oppose HR 1755 / S 815
Lacks a BFOQ exemption. ENDA does not include an exemption for a 'bona fide occupational qualification' (BFOQ).... Lacks a status/conduct distinction. ENDA’s vague definition of 'sexual orientation' would encompass sexual conduct outside of marriage, thus legally affirming and specially protecting that conduct. Supports marriage redefinition.... Rejects the biological basis of gender. ENDA’s definition of 'gender identity' lends force of law to a tendency to view 'gender' as nothing more than a social construct or psychosocial reality, which a person may choose at variance from his or her biological sex. This provision also fails to account for the privacy interests of others.... Threatens religious liberty. ENDA could be used to punish as discrimination what many religions – including the Catholic religion – teach, particularly moral teaching about same-sex sexual conduct. Moreover, the bill’s religious freedom protection, which is derived from Title VII, covers only a subset of religious employers, and as a result of recent litigation, is uncertain in scope. Recent experience also shows that even exempted employers may face government retaliation for relying on such exemptions."
Federal Marriage Amendment - Support HJ Res 51On 6/28/13, Representative Tim Huelskamp introduced H.J. RES. 51, Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States relating to marriage. As per the Administrative Committee of the USCCB, "We offer general support for a Federal Marriage Amendment to the U.S. Constitution as we continue to work to protect marriage in state legislatures, the courts, the Congress and other appropriate forums" (Reaffirmed on 3/14/06). Mike Fitzpatrick has not joined the 56 co-sponsors of H.J. RES. 51 (including Representative Chris Smith). The National Organization for Marriage has a special web site to send messages on HJ Res 51: http://capwiz.com/nationformarriage/home/.
Health Care Conscience Rights Act - Support HR 940 / S 1204
1. Correcting loopholes and other deficiencies in the major federal law preventing governmental discrimination against health care providers that do not help provide or pay for abortions."All House and Senate members should be urged to support and co-sponsor the Health Care Conscience Rights Act, so our First Freedom can regain its proper place as a fundamental right protected in our health care system."
2. Inserting a conscience clause into the health care reform law, so its mandates for particular “benefits” in private health plans will not be used to force insurers, employers and individuals to violate their consciences or give up their health insurance.
3. Adding a “private right of action” to existing federal conscience laws, so those whose consciences are being violated can go to court to defend their rights. (Current enforcement is chiefly at the discretion of the Department of Health and Human Services, which is itself sponsoring some attacks on conscience rights.)
While kudos go to Mike Fitzpatrick for being among the 188 co-sponsors of HR 940, neither Casey nor Toomey are among the 15 co-sponsors of S 1204. The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference has a special site (https://www.votervoice.net/PACC/campaigns/30694/respond), to contact Fitzpatrick, Casey, and Toomey, as well as the president and the vice president, in support of HR 940 / S 1204.
Immigration ReformThe USCCB has a web site to facilitate this message to Senators Casey and Toomey and Representative Fitzpatrick (http://www.capwiz.com/justiceforimmigrants/issues/alert/?alertid=62312721&type=CO):
"I agree with the U.S. Catholic bishops that now is the time to pass just and compassionate immigration reform. I ask that in the 113th Congress you support immigration reform that
- Provides a path to citizenship for undocumented persons in the country;
- Preserves family unity as a corner-stone of our national immigration system;
- Provides legal paths for low-skilled immigrant workers to come and work in the United States;
- Restores due process protections to our immigration enforcement policies;
- Addresses the root causes (push factors) of migration, such as persecution and economic disparity.
I look forward to monitoring your public position on this vital issue to our nation. Our nation can no longer wait."
Marriage and Religious Freedom Act - Support HR 3133
Marriage and Religious Freedom Act - Support HR 3133
No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act - Support HR 7 / S 946
Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act - Support HR 1797/ S 1670 / S 886
To provide for the establishment of the Special Envoy to Promote Religious Freedom of Religious Minorities in the Near East and South Central Asia - Support HR 301 / S 653
Life at Conception Act - Support HR 1091 / S 583
The Sanctity of Human Life Act - Support HR 23
Support Admitting Privileges legislation
Support Marriage / Family and HB 1349 - Oppose HB1647/SB719
"A Marriage Protection Amendment to the Pennsylvania State Constitution may be the only way to preserve the definition of marriage as the union between one man and one woman" (Pennsylvania Catholic Conference):
- Support HB 1349: On 5/8/13, Bucks County's own Paul Clymer joined Daryl Metcalfe and 25 others, in introducing HB 1349, which seeks to strengthen Pennsylvania's Constitution, by adding this: "Marriage is the legal union of only one man and one woman as husband and wife and no other legal union that is treated as marriage or the substantial equivalent thereof shall be valid or recognized."
- Oppose HB1647/SB719: In a 7/12/13 memo, Representative Mark Cohen announced that he was "introducing a bill to repeal the Pennsylvania Defense of Marriage Act and to recognize all same sex marriages made in other states and other countries" [HB 1647]. HB 1647 and its companion SB 719 would negate the fundamental right of children to both a mom and a dad!
The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference has a web site, to facilitate a message to Governor Corbett, in support of marriage and Pennsylvania's DOMA (https://www.votervoice.net/PACC/Campaigns/32995/Respond).
"Simply put, this legislation is intolerant and prejudiced against people of faith" (Pennsylvania Catholic Conference). The Pa Catholic Conference has a special web site to ask your representative and senator to oppose HB300/SB300: https://www.votervoice.net/PACC/Campaigns/33451/Respond.
Oppose SB 872, "Prohibiting mental health professionals from engaging in sexual orientation change efforts with an individual under 18 years of age" - Pa's Version of NJ's S2278
As reported in Jewish World Review (11/18/13), "A couple who wants to send their 15-year-old son to counseling to curb his attraction to other males is suing New Jersey over the state's ban on so-called gay conversion therapies for minors. In August, Gov. Chris Christie signed into law a bill in that outlaws the therapies....the family alleges that the law violates their freedom of speech and free exercise of religion, as well as the parents' fundamental rights"
"A federal court challenge to Pennsylvania's 17-year-old law banning the recognition of same-sex marriages took an important step toward a trial...when a judge rejected two different attempts to block the lawsuit and said high court treatment of cases involving sex and sexual identity have undergone a 'sea change.' U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III denied the motions to dismiss the lawsuit by Pennsylvania's secretaries of the departments of Health and Revenue and Bucks County's register of wills [Emphasis added.]. It is a strong sign the case is headed to trial and, potentially, the U.S. Supreme Court.... Lawyers for the plaintiffs, including the American Civil Liberties Union...said they were delighted with the decision....A spokesman for Gov. Tom Corbett said administration lawyers were reviewing the decision and he could not immediately say whether they will seek an appeal to Jones' decision" (Associated Press, 11/15/13).
On 11/19/13, the Courier Times took a disingenuous, ostensibly objective position, advocating that we abandon efforts to seriously support the Bucks County register of wills: "we support Bucks County Commissioner Diane Marseglia’s suggestion the county should refuse to mount a serious and costly defense against a federal lawsuit targeting Bucks County Register of Wills Don Petrille....the county commissioners should seriously consider Marseglia’s suggestion to unlace the boxing gloves. The commissioners have to approve paying those bills, and so they are within their rights to instruct county attorneys to stand down" (In an email to this blogger, Marseglia indicated that all of the commissioners share her position.)