in Senate Health Care Bill Energizes Pro-Life Activists Ahead of
Friday marks the 37th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the U.S. Supreme
Court decision that legalized abortion-on-demand nationwide, and a
coalition of more than 70 pro-life organizations says this year’s
commemorative “March for Life” on that day is more significant than any
“January 22 of this year, 2010, takes on even more importance as
Congress prepares to vote on a sweeping takeover of health care that
would mandate abortion coverage and mandate government funding for
abortion,” David Bereit, campaign director for 40 Days for Life, one of
the groups in the march’s coalition, said in a video promoting the
“If this legislation passes, we will be paying for abortion with
taxpayers’ dollars,” Kristan Hawkins, executive director for the
pro-life college campus ministry Students for Life of America, told
Even though the Democrats' legislation allows states to possibly “opt
out” of providing at least one insurance plan that covers abortion,
activists say federal dollars will be used to pay for health plans that
cover abortion in the states that potentially do not opt out.
“Yes, in the Senate version it says states can opt out,” Hawkins said.
“But it doesn’t mean you won’t be paying for abortion. Even if you were
to opt out, it doesn’t mean you won’t be paying for abortion in another
In a Dec. 21 press release, House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio)
said, “The new language does include a ‘state opt-out’ provision if a
state passes a law to prohibit insurance coverage of abortion, but it’s
a sham because it does nothing to prevent one state’s tax dollars from
paying for elective abortions in other states."
Although the Park Police no longer provide official crowd estimates of
events on the National Mall, past “March for Life” events have seen
thousands and even hundreds of thousands gather to march from the
Ellipse near the White House to the steps of the Supreme Court on
Americans are not the only people who will be represented in the large
crowd. Leaders of Human Life International (HLI) from Africa, Europe,
and Asia claim pro-abortion policies in the United States have taken a
toll around the globe.
“America’s March for Life is now the world’s March for Life," Joseph
Meaney, director of International Coordination for Human Life
International (HLI), said in a statement issued about the march. “It
has become the world’s pro-life protest because of the aggressive
promotion of abortion and population control that is now the official
policy of the United States, thanks to the administration of President
Dr. Ligaya Acosta, HLI regional coordinator for Asia and Oceania, cited
in the statement one of the first executive orders that Obama signed,
after taking office a year ago, to reverse the Mexico City Policy put
into place by President Ronald Reagan. That policy had prohibited U.S.
dollars from being used to promote or provide abortion through
federally funded programs around the world.
“This is not only the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, which has led to the
destruction of almost 50 million American children,” Acosta said. “This
is now the anniversary of President Obama's allowing Americans’
taxpayer funds to be used to promote abortion and other assaults on
life in my own country of the Philippines, in Africa, in China … all
over the world where 40 million babies are killed every year. It is
wrong and we are here to tell him and Congress to stop paying to kill
“We are tired of the arrogant American government trying to tell us how
many children we should have,” said Emil Hagamu, HLI’s regional
coordinator for English-speaking Africa. “President Obama is of Kenyan
“How can he do this to his own people?” Hagamu said.
Raymond DeSouza, HLI's coordinator for Portuguese-speaking nations,
said tying abortion to international aid promotes violence as a part of
“When international aid is tied to abortion, it’s like holding a
nation hostage, telling them that children are bad, which translates
into hopelessness for the future,” DeSouza said. “This is a terrible
violence against the families and children of the developing world.”
Peter Shinn, who heads the pro-life network Pro-Life Unity, says in the
March for Life promotional video that the health care legislation now
being proposed in Congress could add millions more to the over 50
million unborn children who have been aborted since 1973.
“If Planned Parenthood and abortion lobbyists are successful getting
their friends in the House, the Senate, and the White House to give
them what they want – a massive government funded bailout – it will
result in the largest expansion of abortion since Roe versus Wade,”
Shinn said. “That’s why this Jan. 22 it is critical that every pro-life
American take a public stand to speak up for those who cannot speak for
The coalition Web site, www.stoptheabortionmandate.com,
video and detailed information about the pro-life march
ranging from arranging visits with members of Congress to tips on
making signs and traveling by Metro trains.
Hawkins, whose organization holds its national conference of more than
1,000 college students in conjunction with the march, said passage of
the proposed health care legislation would be devastating to both the
movement and the unborn.
“Millions of lives will be lost and it will set us back for years to
come,” Hawkins said of the bill’s passage. “But if we defeat it, it
will be a shining star and it will really show what can happen when we
come together, when we work together.”
The March for Life begins at noon on the National Mall.
Contact: Penny Starr
January 19, 2010
to a friend.
The IFRL is the largest grassroots pro-life organization in
Illinois. A non-profit organization, that serves as the state
coordinating body for local pro-life chapters representing thousands of
Illinois citizens working to restore respect for all human life in our
society. The IFRL is composed of people of different political
persuasions, various faiths and diverse economic, social and ethnic
backgrounds. Since 1973 the Illinois Federation for Right to Life has
been working to end abortion and restore legal protection to those members of the
human family who are threatened by abortion, infanticide and euthanasia. Diverse though we are, we hold one common belief - that
every human being has an inalienable right to life that is precious and must be protected. IFRL is
dedicated to restoring the right to life to the unborn, and protection
for the disabled and the elderly. Click here to learn more about the IFRL.