As soon as members were sworn in and Nancy Pelosi was handed the speaker’s gavel, the battle to protect life in the 116th Congress was underway on the floor of the U.S. Houses of Representatives. The new Democrat majority’s first legislative move to “end the government shutdown” also contains provisions to advance pro-abortion policies overseas. Pelosi’s Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2019 undermines a signature prolife initiative of the Trump Administration, the Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance policy (formerly known as the Mexico City policy) which prohibits American taxpayer funds from being used by nongovernmental organizations to perform or promote abortion abroad. The Democrat bill also proposes to expand aid to the United Nations Population Fund which notoriously stands by China’s policy of coerced abortions.
Spurred on by Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee and partner prolife groups who promised to score against the bill, Republicans flexed their minority muscle and stood in strong opposition. Taking to the House floor under the leadership of incoming Appropriations committee ranking member, Kay Granger (R-Texas), prolife members chastised Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats for pushing a pro-abortion agenda on the American people from Day One. Pro-life Caucus chairman Chris Smith (R-New Jersey), and Values Action Team chairwoman Vicky Hartzler (R-Missouri) were among those exposing the Democrat’s tactics. Rep. Granger offered a Motion to Recommit with instructions to strike the pro-abortion policy provisions from the bill. Along with impassioned floor speeches, the Motion to Recommit is among the minority party’s best tools to amend legislation and contrast the views of members. Democrats Dan Lipinski (Ohio) and Collin Peterson (Minnesota), the only prolife Democrats in the House, voted with the Republicans on Rep. Granger’s motion.
As will be the case in the new Congress, House Democrats will prevail in passing legislation that will break the hearts of the prolife community, as they did on final passage of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2019. But in flexing its muscle on the House floor, the new Republican minority set the stage for Senate debate, where a new class of prolife Senators were sworn in this week, and the Pelosi bill is expected to be dead on arrival.
Even with congressional threats to prolife policy, we can still take productive administrative action through rulemaking. Currently the Trump administration is working to add crucial integrity measures to the enforcement of Obamacare to require transparency in abortion coverage. The Department of Health and Human Services has submitted a rule for public comment that would require insurance providers to collect a separate payment for abortion coverage. This is the best interpretation of the law which specifies a separate payment must be collected. The Obama administration did not accurately interpret or enforce this law, and taxpayer funds for healthcare are being co-mingled with abortion coverage. We need your support for this rule to be put in place. Click here to submit your public comment before the deadline on Tuesday, January 8, at 5:00 p.m. EST. Tell the Trump Administration you don’t want taxpayer funds covering elective abortion!