PRO-LIFE BILL IN TN PASSES KEY HURDLES; HEADS TO SENATE FLOOR
Legislation to protect viable unborn children from abortion in Tennessee was moved forward yesterday (Wednesday, April 19) 7-2 following a lengthy debate in the Senate Judiciary Committee. Testimony may be viewed here (please either click on SB1180 below the video screen or move the video forward to 20:04.)
Tennessee Right to Life expresses gratitude to committee members voting in support of SB 1180 by Sen. Joey Hensley, M.D. including Chairman Brian Kelsey, and Senators Mike Bell, Janice Bowling, Jon Lundberg, Doug Overbey, Kerry Roberts, and John Stevens. Pro-abortion Senators Lee Harris and Sara Kyle voted in opposition.
In the House, companion bill HB 1189 by Rep. Matthew Hill was moved out of Finance Sub-committee to the full committee by a voice vote. Tennessee Right to Life is grateful for the pro-life leadership of sub-committee Chairman Gerald McCormick.
It is anticipated that the TN Infants Protection Act will move next week to the Senate floor and to full committee of the House Finance Ways and Means.
Your voice is needed to counter the energized pro-abortion activists who are flooding legislators with opposition to this common sense protection for children who would otherwise be able to live outside the womb.
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Update on Pro-Abortion Legal Challenges to Amendment 1, Pro-Life Laws
Tennessee Right to Life has become aware that, due to an ongoing shortage of judges in the Middle Tennessee District Federal Court, a Michigan judge has been named to oversee the challenge of Tennessee's pro-life laws. The lawsuit Adams & Boyle v. Slatery is brought by independent owner-operators of private abortion facilities in Bristol, Nashville and Memphis and seeks to strike common-sense provisions requiring informed consent and a 48-hour waiting period for women and girls considering abortion, hospital admitting privileges for abortion providers and health department inspection and licensing requirements for abortion facilities in Tennessee.
In December 2015, by agreement of both parties, Judge Kevin Sharp agreed to place the case on hold pending the outcome of the Texas case with similar issues being taken up by the U.S. Supreme Court (Whole Woman's Health.) That case was decided in June 2016 with the challenged admitting privileges law and abortion facility standards being struck down in Texas.
Judge Sharp announced his retirement from the District Court effective April 15, 2017. Now, Michigan Senior Federal District Judge Bernard A. Friedman, by special designation, has asked both parties to prepare for trial.
TRUMP ADMINISTRATION REDIRECTS U.S. FUNDING AWAY FROM UNITED NATIONS POPULATION FUND
WASHINGTON – The Trump Administration reinstated a policy Monday, April 3, directing United States foreign assistance dollars away from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) on the basis that its activities in China are complicit with that nation's coercive population control program, the implementation of which includes forced abortion and involuntary sterilization. United States funding will be directed instead to other family planning and health programs not involved in China's population control program.
"We congratulate President Trump and his administration for making it abundantly clear the United States will not support a United Nations agency that cooperates in China's brutally repressive population control policies," said National Right to Life President Carol Tobias. "I heartily applaud what we at National Right to Life are seeing from this pro-life administration."
The State Department memorandum issued yesterday determined that the UNFPA was in violation of the Kemp-Kasten anti-coercion law. The amendment prohibits giving U.S. "population assistance" funds to "any organization or program which, as determined by the President of the United States, supports or participates in the management of a program of coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization."
As the memo states:
The Chinese Government's Population and Family Planning Law, even as amended in 2015, and related regulations and practices at the central and Provincial levels, clearly constitute a "program of coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization," and are an integral part of the comprehensive population-control program the Chinese Government advances. While there is no evidence that UNFPA directly engages in coercive abortions or involuntary sterilizations in China, the agency continues to partner with the [National Health and Family Planning Commission] on family planning, and thus can be found to support, or participate in the management of China's coercive policies for purposes of the Kemp-Kasten Amendment.
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