in Pennsylvania's First Congressional District's_1st_congressional_district
and the Central Garden State

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Washington and Harrisburg


Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2013 - Support HR 3279/S1848
As per Cardinal O'Malley's 11/1/13 letter to the U.S. House of Representatives, "I am writing to ask your support for Rep.Chris Smith's Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act' (H.R. 3279)."  As of 2/13/18, our “pro life” congressman Mike Fitzpatrick is NOT one of the 125 co-sponsors of H.R. 3279.  Neither of our "pro life" senators - NEITHER Casey NOR Toomey - are among the 24 co-sponsors of S1848.

Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act - Support HR 732 / S 32 / S 369
Human Trafficking indeed!  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.... 'We urge Congress to pass this law to help protect vulnerable girls from this kind of exploitation'" (USCCB, 4/27/05).  Kudos to Mike Fitzpatrick for being among the 114 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 Parenthood
In a 4/13/11 letter to the U.S. House of Representatives, Daniel Cardinal DiNardo, then chairman of the USCCB's Committee on Pro-Life Activities, called for de-funding Planned Parenthood.  As per the American Life League's 2013 Study on Planned Parenthood Federation of America, "neither the American taxpayer nor healthcare in general benefits by funding an organization dedicated (by choice) to abortion."  As they each identify themselves as “pro life,” we need Fitzpatrick, Casey, and Toomey to work to de-fund Planned Parenthood.

Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 2013 (ENDA) - Oppose HR 1755 / S 815
As S 815 passed the Senate (with votes from BOTH Casey and Toomey), it is all the more vital that Fitzpatrick oppose HR 1755. As per the USCCB's 10/31/13 letter to the U.S. Senate, "the USCCB continues to promote the dignity of both work & marriage & to oppose unjust discrimination on any grounds, including those related to homosexual inclination or sexual identity. But we cannot support a bill, like ENDA, that does not justly advance the dignity of all workers &authentic non-discrimination" Mike Fitzpatrick, are you committed to voting AGAINST HR 1755?

Federal Marriage Amendment - Support HJ Res 51
On 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 58 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:

Health Care Conscience Rights Act - Support HR 940 / S 1204
As per the USCCB, "All House and Senate members should be urged to support & co-sponsor the Health Care Conscience Rights Act"  Kudos to Mike Fitzpatrick for being among the 194 co-sponsors of HR 940.  Kudos to Toomey for being among the 19 co-sponsors of S 1204; Casey is NOT a co-sponsor.  

Immigration Reform
The USCCB has a web site to contact Casey, Toomey and  Fitzpatrick (, in support of "just and compassionate immigration reform."

Marriage and Religious Freedom Act - Support HR 3133/S1808
"Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage, & Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, expressed strong support for the Marriage & Religious Freedom Act (S. 1808)....Both archbishops previously endorsed the companion Marriage and Religious Freedom the U.S. House of Representatives" [i.e., HR 3133] (USCCB Chairmen Praise Introduction of the ‘Marriage and Religious Freedom Act’ in the Senate, 12/12/13). Fitzpatrick has NOT joined the 100 co-sponsors of HR 3133. NEITHER Casey NOR Toomey are among the 16 co-sponsors of S.1808The National Organization for Marriage has a special web site (, to contact Casey, Toomey, and Fitzpatrick.

No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act - Support HR 7 / S 946
In his 11/1/13 letter to the U.S. House of Representatives, Cardinal O'Malley notes the USCCB's support for HR 7 (introduced by Rep Chris Smith).  Kudos to Mike Fitzpatrick for his favorable vote on HR 7.  Kudos to Toomey for being among the 26 co-sponsors of S 946; Casey is NOT a co-sponsor.  While Casey is the sponsor of S 142 (without any co-sponsors), it strikes this blogger as inferior to S 946.

Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act - Support HR 1797/ S 1670 / S 886
As per a 6/14/13 letter to the U.S. House of Representatives from Cardinal O'Malley, "I urge you to support the common-sense reform offered by H.R. 1797." Kudos to Mike Fitzpatrick for his favorable vote on 6/18/13.  Kudos to Pat Toomey for being among the 40 co-sponsors of S. 1670 and the 34 co-sponsors of S. 886.  Our “pro life” senator Bob Casey is NOT a co-sponsor of S. 1670 and is NOT a co-sponsor of S. 886.

State Marriage Defense Act - Support HR3829 / S2024

As reported by the Pa Catholic Conference, "Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage, applauded the January 9 introduction of the bipartisan State Marriage Defense Act of 2014 (H.R. 3829)....'The State Marriage Defense Act is a necessary piece of legislation that will prevent the federal government from unjustly disregarding, in certain instances, state marriage laws concerning the definition of marriage,'....He went on to say, '....State marriage laws defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman deserve respect by the federal government.'"  Heretofore, Mike Fitzpatrick has claimed marriage to be a "state" issue.  Yet, he is NOT one of the 57 co-sponsors of HR 3829. As per the National Organization for Marriage, senate version S 2024 "is substantively similar to HR 3829. Neither Casey nor Toomey are cosponsoring S 2024.

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
As per Bishop Pates' 5/20/13 letter to Senators Roy Blunt and Carl Levin, "As Chair of the Committee on International Justice and Peace of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, I commend your tireless efforts to advance religious freedom as evidenced by your sponsorship of S. 653, a bill to establish a Special Envoy to Promote Religious Freedom of Religious Minorities in the Near East and South Central Asia." On 9/18/13, Mike Fitzpatrick voted favorably on the House version, HR 301 - Bravo.  Kudos to Pat Toomey for being one of the 22 co-sponsors of S.653; Casey is NOT a co-sponsor.

Please copy/paste the following into a message for Senator Casey, Senator Toomey, and Congressman Fitzpatrick (
"It is deeply troubling that Senators Casey and Toomey voted for S 815, which the USCCB says "could be used to punish as discrimination what the Catholic Church teaches."  We need Mike Fitzpatrick to OPPOSE the house version, HR 1755.

"In the interest of basic human dignity - particularly the welfare of children - please CO-SPONSOR/ SUPPORT HR 3279/S1848 (the Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act), HR732/S32/S369 (the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act), HJRes51 (an amendment to the Constitution of the United States relating to marriage), HR940/S1204 (the Health Care Conscience Rights Act), HR3133/S1808 (the Marriage and Religious Freedom Act), HR7/S946 (the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act), HR1797/S1670/S 886 (the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act), HR 3829/S2024 (the State Marriage Defense Act), and HR301/S653 (To provide for the establishment of the Special Envoy to Promote Religious Freedom of Religious Minorities in the Near East and South Central Asia).

"Please work to de-fund Planned Parenthood and to achieve what the USCCB has called 'compassionate immigration reform.'" 


HB 587

As reported by the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference: "Among the many atrocities revealed at Dr. Kermit Gosnell’s 'House of Horrors' abortion clinic in West Philadelphia was that several of his staff provided medical services without the proper training or license to do so....[the] House of Representatives passed House Bill 587 to increase the penalty for those who commit the crime of impersonating a doctor of medicine."  HB 587 is now with the Senate judiciary committee, of which Bucks/Montgomery Counties' Senator Stewart Greenleaf is chair.  Please urge Greenleaf ( to move forward with this legislation, so that it can ultimately receive a favorable vote by the full senate and a signature by the governor.

Human Trafficking

As per the U.S. State Department's Trafficking in Persons Report 2013, only "a mere fraction of the more than 26 million men, women, and children who are estimated to suffer in modern slavery have been recognized by governments as such and are eligible to receive the protection and support they are owed."  "The solemn proclamation of human rights is contradicted by a painful reality of violations,

Sen Stewart Greenleaf "introduced SB75, a law to fight human trafficking in Pennsylvania that was unanimously approved Dec. 10 in the Senate” (Linda Finarelli, Human trafficking bill pending in PA House, 1/24/14).  As per the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference, "Legislation was already passed unanimously by the Pennsylvania Senate in December and hopefully it will be considered by the House of Representatives in the near future....we must demand legislative action that supports the dignity of the person and prevents victims from even getting involved in human trafficking. Please send a message in support of legislation that ends human trafficking by clicking here"  (Note: The Pa Catholic Conference has not specifically said if it supports SB75.).

Marriage / Family: Support HB 1349 and 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" (Pa Catholic Conference). The Pa Catholic Conference has a web site, to facilitate a message to Governor Corbett, in support of marriage and Pa's DOMA (  Our legislators should support Sen. Clymer's HB1349, and oppose  SB719/HB1647.

Oppose SB 872

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.  In contrast to philosophies behind SB 872 and S2278, eminent psychiatrist Dr. Rick Fitzgibbons of Montgomery County maintains that "Youth have the right to be provided informed consent about the serious medical and psychiatric illnesses, and risks, of the homosexual lifestyle. Pediatricians, mental health professionals, physicians, nurses and school counselors have a clear legal responsibility to do so, and parents, family members, educators, and clergy a grave moral responsibility" (Same-Sex Attractions in Youth and Their Right to Informed Consent, 5/21/12). 

Oppose HB300/SB300

"House Bill 300/Senate Bill 300 would add 'gender identity or expression' and 'sexual orientation' to Pennsylvania's non-discrimination law. Changing the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA) to protect people based on sexual attraction and behavior will jeopardize many churches and their charitable outreach.  In other states, this law has shuttered Catholic adoption agencies and trampled religious liberty. HB/SB 300 could mean that Catholic agencies would no longer be able to make our contributions to the common good of Pennsylvania without violating our religious beliefs. The law has also caused conflicts for private business owners with legitimate religious and moral concerns....In reality, HB/SB 300 exposes even more Pennsylvanians to discrimination. Simply put, this legislation is intolerant and prejudiced against people of faith. Send a message to the legislature urging them to vote "no" on HB/SB 300 " (Pennsylvania Catholic Conference).
From Bucks County, HB300/SB300 is being co-sponsored by Rep. Tina DavisRep. John Galloway, Sen. Chuck McIlhinneyRep. Marguerite Quinn, Rep. Steve Santarsiero, Rep. Scott Petri, and Rep. Katherine Watson (cf. and  While the Pa Catholic Conference calls HB/SB 300 "intolerant and prejudiced against people of faith," as many as 28 original co-sponsors are "Catholic" (i.e., Reps Brendan Boyle, Thomas Caltagirone, Mike Carroll, Dominic Costa, Paul Costa, Tina Davis (???), Frank Dermody, John Galloway, Patrick Harkins, Joseph MarkosekMichael McGeehan, Thomas Murt, Eddie Day Pashinski, John Sabatina, Mario Scavello, Thomas Killion, Robert Matzie, and Catherine Harper. Sens Patrick Browne, Jay Costa, Chuck McIlhinney, Lisa Boscola, Wayne Fontana, John Blake, Mike Stack, Sean Wiley, John Yudichak, and Richard Kasunic).  Though he also identifies himself as "Catholic," Governor Tom Corbett has indicated that he would sign this legislation.

Email Gov. Corbett and all of Bucks County's representatives and senators in Harrisburg (i.e., Rep. Clymer, Rep. Davis, Rep. DiGirolomo, Rep. Farry, Rep. Galloway, Rep. O'Neill, Rep. Petri, Rep. Quinn, Rep. Santarsiero, Rep. Watson, Sen. Greenleaf, Sen. McIlhinney, Sen. Mensch, and Sen. Tomlinson), asking that they OPPOSE HB 300 / SB 300 (as well as SB 872) and SUPPORT Pa's DOMA, as well as HB 587.

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