Pelosi joined 217 of her 219 Democratic Party colleagues who voted in favour of the Act, which denies the free will of every person who opposes abortion, and makes it the business of every American to participate in abortion on demand for any or no reason up to the day of birth. While the purported purpose of the Act is to protect a health care provider’s alleged right to abortion its effect is to mandate that any hospital accommodate a demand for abortion and any obstetrician or similar health care professional provide it. And the bill expressly denies the right of such professional to refuse to perform an abortion on conscience grounds. Indeed, the Act makes such refusal a civil rights violation, and exposes the medical provider to a lawsuit for gender discrimination.
Catholic President Joe Biden has indicated that he will sign this noxious bill into law.
Pelosi’s rank hypocrisy is overshadowed only by the moral atrocity of the Act itself.
For example, among its “findings and purpose”, the Act bemoans the persistent problem that we abort insufficient numbers of racial and ethnic minority children in the United States. Channeling the spirit of racist and eugenicist Margaret Sanger—patroness of abortion advocates—the Act complains that “[A]bortion services” have “always been deficient . . . for Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color (BIPOC) and their families.” Yes, all but two House Democrats affirmed this shockingly hideous “finding.”
The Act then gets down to the business of eliminating any restriction or regulation of abortion, regardless of how reasonable, at any time during gestation. The Act would, among other things, invalidate any State’s laws that would attempt to: require parental notice or consent for minors; impose any waiting period of any duration; require physicians to have admitting privileges at actual hospitals; exempt employers from paying for abortions through insurance plans; impose abortion-specific health or safety regulations on abortion clinics; prohibit State or federal tax revenues from paying for abortions if they otherwise pay for health care services; or prohibit abortions for the purpose of sex selection, or any other culling motivation.
Most importantly, the Act prohibits States from imposing any gestational limits on abortion, including up to the day of live delivery. The Act would preempt a State law prohibiting post-viability abortion “when, in the good-faith medical judgment of the treating health care provider, continuation of the pregnancy would pose a risk to the pregnant patient’s life or health.” Of course, the determination of the risk to the “patient’s life or health” would be made by the abortionist who will be paid to perform the abortion, rendering the provision meaningless. And because there is no mechanism for determining “good faith”, the language is nothing more than a fig leaf attempting to hide the shame of this hideous statute.
The Act would preempt a State law prohibiting post-viability abortion “when, in the good-faith medical judgment of the treating health care provider, continuation of the pregnancy would pose a risk to the pregnant patient’s life or health.”
Finally, the Act provides for a private cause of action for violations of its provisions. “Any individual or entity” may bring a lawsuit under the Act against any person who “implements or enforces a limitation” on abortion services. As the Act is written, this would encompass a Catholic physician acting under a State law that provides conscience exemptions to performing abortions. In other words, a Catholic hospital or physician can be sued under the Act for refusing to accommodate or perform an abortion. And, lest there be any confusion, the Act expressly denies protection from the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which otherwise provides such exemptions under federal law. So much for Nancy Pelosi’s concern for “free will.”
Under this morally gruesome Act, a woman may procure an abortion for any reason, at any time; and she may force a hospital or physician to perform the abortion under threat of a federal civil rights lawsuit. And no State may deny funding of abortion if it otherwise funds health care programs for its citizens. The only ray of light is that the Act has almost no chance of passing in the Senate. But if the composition of the Senate were to shift to the Democrats by one or two more seats in the next election, professed Catholic President Joe Biden has indicated that he will sign this noxious bill into law.
Ken Craycraft is a Chapter House columnist.
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