Skip to comments.The Audacity of FOCA (sponsored by Senator Barbara Boxer & co-sponsored by pres candidate Obama)
Posted on 10/17/2008 10:34:06 AM PDT by NYer
As the election quickly approaches, the U.S. bishops are shining a harsh spotlight on one bill: the Freedom of Choice Act, commonly called FOCA. FOCA is again before Congress; its chief sponsor in the Senate is Barbara Boxer and one of its co-sponsors is presidential candidate Barack Obama.
In July 2007, Obama told a Planned Parenthood audience: The first thing Id do as president is sign the Freedom of Choice Act. Search YouTube.com for the words Obama and FOCA to hear it for yourself. Since Obama has said that signing FOCA into law would be his first priority as a new president, summarizing the bill answers the question: For what change does Barack Obama have the audacity to hope?
The U.S. bishops summary of FOCA points out:
It creates a fundamental right to abortion throughout the nine months of pregnancy. No governmental body at any level would be able to deny or interfere with this right, or to discriminate against the exercise of this right in the regulation or provision of benefits, facilities, services, or information. For the first time, abortion would become an entitlement the government must condone and promote.
Some states require that women be told about the risks of abortion. FOCA would erase all informed-consent laws states have enacted.
Many states require that parents be informed and sign off on their daughters abortions, just as they are informed and involved in every other surgical procedure. FOCA would override and end all parental-involvement laws.
Some states have laws promoting maternal health. Obamas FOCA wouldnt allow them.
Regulation on abortion clinics helps keep these businesses responding to health and safety concerns. FOCA would end these regulations.
FOCA would disallow government programs and facilities that pay for or promote childbirth and other health care without subsidizing abortion, say the U.S. bishops.
Conscience-protection laws would end. These currently allow Catholic and other pro-life hospitals, doctors, medical students and health-care workers to opt out of participating in abortion in many places.
After FOCA, any laws that prohibit a particular abortion procedure, such as partial-birth abortion, will no longer be in force.
FOCA would also strike laws requiring that abortions only be performed by a licensed physician.
For a careful legal analysis of FOCA by the U.S. bishops Office of General Counsel, or a summary fact sheet to distribute, see NCHLA.org.
In a Sept. 19 letter to members of Congress, Cardinal Justin Rigali, chairman of the bishops Committee on Pro-Life Activities, raised the bishops concerns about any possible consideration of FOCA.
Despite its deceptive title, FOCA would deprive the American people in all 50 states of the freedom they now have to enact modest restraints and regulations on the abortion industry, wrote Cardinal Rigali. It would also counteract any and all sincere efforts by government to reduce abortions in our country.
We cant reduce abortions by promoting abortion, he said. Find the full text of his letter at:
USCCB.org (click on Life Issues).
The U.S. bishops are asking Catholics to contact their U.S. representatives and U.S. senators by fax, letter, e-mail or phone.
Find the names of your U.S. representative and senators by typing in your zip code at ProjectVoteSmart.org.
If you know your representatives names, but not their contact information, call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121.
The bishops recommend delivering this message to all lawmakers who represent us: Please pledge now to oppose FOCA.
Other actions recommended by the bishops:
1. Arrange a formal meeting with your representative and two senators in their home offices or Washington, D.C., offices.
2. Communicate with your representative and two senators at town meetings.
3. Place an ad opposing FOCA in your local Catholic paper or other publication, or insert educational materials in church bulletins. For an ad presentation designed for grassroots use, see
For bulletin inserts in black and white or color:
(If going directly to the page doesnt work, find each from the home pages.)
4. Write letters to the editors of newspapers, and express your views on call-in radio talk shows.
Some Catholics have made the point that Sen. John McCain would be no savior for the pro-life cause. Theyre absolutely right. His 100% pro-life voting record on abortion is marred by his disagreement with pro-lifers about fatal research on human embryos. But McCain has a decades-long pro-life history to point to, and he does oppose the Freedom of Choice Act.
The right to life is the basis of all other rights and the central human rights question of our day. Join the U.S. bishops efforts to spread the word about FOCA and the consequences it will have on our nation.
breathtakingly evil ....
Great, your local butcher (literally, as in cuts up beef), will have more health regulations in place than the...
BABY BUTCHERS, who are “helping” women and will need no health regulations.
Why the drop after 1960? (in deaths of women from illegal abortions)
The reasons were new and better antibiotics, better surgery and the establishment of intensive care units in hospitals. This was in the face of a rising population. Between 1967 and 1970 sixteen states legalized abortion. In most it was limited, only for rape, incest and severe fetal handicap (life of mother was legal in all states). There were two big exceptions California in 1967, and New York in 1970 allowed abortion on demand. Now look at the chart carefully.
Abortion Statistics - Decision to Have an Abortion (U.S.)
· 25.5% of women deciding to have an abortion want to postpone childbearing
· 21.3% of women cannot afford a baby
· 14.1% of women have a relationship issue or their partner does not want a child
· 12.2% of women are too young (their parents or others object to the pregnancy)
· 10.8% of women feel a child will disrupt their education or career
· 7.9% of women want no (more) children
· 3.3% of women have an abortion due to a risk to fetal health
2.8% of women have an abortion due to a risk to maternal health
So how many womens lives have been saved by abortion?
Only about 3% of abortions since 1972 were reported to be due to a risk to maternal health. A reasonable person would recognize that not all of those cases represent a lethal risk. But lets say they did. That means that nearly 45 million fetuses were butchered to save the lives of about 1.3 million women. Or put another way; 35 babies are killed to save each woman.
Abortion was legal in all 50 states prior to Roe v. Wade in cases of danger to the life of the woman.
I am pro-life to the bone (more so than most people I know), but knowing this history, makes FOCA even more terrifying. There are so many pitfalls, how anyone could endorse it is beyond me.
Obama is not pro-choice.
Instead, he is proving he is worse - he is pro-abortion.
The difference? The first is passive on abortion (or it’s not a high priority and other things are more important) whereas the second is active on abortion (it’s critical enough we need to lobby to allow it or perhaps even enforce it).
Scary, but true.
Wednesday night McCain could have explained 0bamas promise to sign the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA). Its on tape. 0bama promised at a Planned Parenthood convention that the first thing he would do as president is overturn every pro-life law in all 50 states, including the Partial Birth Abortion ban, parental notification and consent. Thats what FOCA would do.
McCain could have closed with explaining that 0bamas FOCA promise is proof that 0bamas common ground on abortion is just more lies and BS.
0bama and his pathetic looser, Traitor Kmiec would have been hard pressed to spin on that.
Barack Obamas Pledge to Overturn Every Pro-Life Abortion Law One Year Old http://www.lifenews.com/nat4070.html
Barack Obamas Freedom of Choice Act Would Mean 125K More Abortions http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2089733/posts
Barack Obama Takes a Subtle But Deadly Approach to Advocating Abortion http://www.lifenews.com/nat3762.html
As good as McCain did Wednesday night, he missed a tremendous opportunity to prove 0bamas lies and rabid lust for abortion.
Please FreepMail me if you want on or off my Pro-Life Ping List.
I am amazed how many don't know about this Bill.
But, anyway, here is the bill status and the bill text. Note: The links in the following text do NOT work!!
Title: A bill to protect, consistent with Roe v. Wade, a woman's freedom to choose to bear a child or terminate a pregnancy, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen Boxer, Barbara [CA] (introduced 4/19/2007) Cosponsors (19)
Related Bills: H.R.1964
Latest Major Action: 4/19/2007 Referred to Senate committee. Status: Read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.
Jump to: Summary, Major Actions, All Actions, Titles, Cosponsors, Committees, Related Bill Details, Amendments
SUMMARY AS OF:
Freedom of Choice Act - Declares that it is the policy of the United States that every woman has the fundamental right to choose to: (1) bear a child; (2) terminate a pregnancy prior to fetal viability; or (3) terminate a pregnancy after fetal viability when necessary to protect her life or her health.
Prohibits a federal, state, or local governmental entity from: (1) denying or interfering with a woman's right to exercise such choices; or (2) discriminating against the exercise of those rights in the regulation or provision of benefits, facilities, services, or information. Provides that such prohibition shall apply retroactively.
Authorizes an individual aggrieved by a violation of this Act to obtain appropriate relief, including relief against a governmental entity, in a civil action.
- Read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.
TITLE(S): (italics indicate a title for a portion of a bill)
- SHORT TITLE(S) AS INTRODUCED:
Freedom of Choice Act
- OFFICIAL TITLE AS INTRODUCED:
A bill to protect, consistent with Roe v. Wade, a woman's freedom to choose to bear a child or terminate a pregnancy, and for other purposes.
COSPONSORS(19), ALPHABETICAL [followed by Cosponsors withdrawn]: (Sort: by date)
Sen Baucus, Max [MT] - 4/19/2007
Sen Bingaman, Jeff [NM] - 4/19/2007
Sen Brown, Sherrod [OH] - 5/2/2007
Sen Cantwell, Maria [WA] - 4/19/2007
Sen Cardin, Benjamin L. [MD] - 4/19/2007
Sen Clinton, Hillary Rodham [NY] - 4/19/2007
Sen Feinstein, Dianne [CA] - 4/19/2007
Sen Kerry, John F. [MA] - 6/13/2007
Sen Lautenberg, Frank R. [NJ] - 4/19/2007
Sen Lieberman, Joseph I. [CT] - 4/23/2007
Sen Menendez, Robert [NJ] - 4/19/2007
Sen Mikulski, Barbara A. [MD] - 4/19/2007
Sen Murray, Patty [WA] - 4/19/2007
Sen Obama, Barack [IL] - 5/11/2007
Sen Sanders, Bernard [VT] - 4/25/2007
Sen Schumer, Charles E. [NY] - 4/19/2007
Sen Stabenow, Debbie [MI] - 4/19/2007
Sen Tester, Jon [MT] - 4/23/2007
Sen Whitehouse, Sheldon [RI] - 6/6/2007
Committee/Subcommittee: Activity: Senate Judiciary Referral, In Committee
RELATED BILL DETAILS: (additional related bills may be indentified in Status)
Bill: Relationship: H.R.1964 Related bill identified by CRS
The actual contents of the bill are as follows:
S 1173 IS
1st Session S. 1173
To protect, consistent with Roe v. Wade, a woman's freedom to choose to bear a child or terminate a pregnancy, and for other purposes.
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
April 19, 2007
Mrs. BOXER (for herself, Mrs. MURRAY, Ms. STABENOW, Mr. BINGAMAN, Mr. MENENDEZ, Mr. LAUTENBERG, Mr. CARDIN, Mr. SCHUMER, Mrs. CLINTON, Mrs. FEINSTEIN, Ms. MIKULSKI, Mr. BAUCUS, and Ms. CANTWELL) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary
To protect, consistent with Roe v. Wade, a woman's freedom to choose to bear a child or terminate a pregnancy, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the `Freedom of Choice Act'.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
Congress finds the following:
(1) The United States was founded on core principles, such as liberty, personal privacy, and equality, which ensure that individuals are free to make their most intimate decisions without governmental interference and discrimination.
(2) One of the most private and difficult decisions an individual makes is whether to begin, prevent, continue, or terminate a pregnancy. Those reproductive health decisions are best made by women, in consultation with their loved ones and health care providers.
(3) In 1965, in Griswold v. Connecticut (381 U.S. 479), and in 1973, in Roe v. Wade (410 U.S. 113) and Doe v. Bolton (410 U.S. 179), the Supreme Court recognized that the right to privacy protected by the Constitution encompasses the right of every woman to weigh the personal, moral, and religious considerations involved in deciding whether to begin, prevent, continue, or terminate a pregnancy.
(4) The Roe v. Wade decision carefully balances the rights of women to make important reproductive decisions with the State's interest in potential life. Under Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, the right to privacy protects a woman's decision to choose to terminate her pregnancy prior to fetal viability, with the State permitted to ban abortion after fetal viability except when necessary to protect a woman's life or health.
(5) These decisions have protected the health and lives of women in the United States. Prior to the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973, an estimated 1,200,000 women each year were forced to resort to illegal abortions, despite the risk of unsanitary conditions, incompetent treatment, infection, hemorrhage, disfiguration, and death. Before Roe, it is estimated that thousands of women died annually in the United States as a result of illegal abortions.
(6) In countries in which abortion remains illegal, the risk of maternal mortality is high. According to the World Health Organization, of the approximately 600,000 pregnancy-related deaths occurring annually around the world, 80,000 are associated with unsafe abortions.
(7) The Roe v. Wade decision also expanded the opportunities for women to participate equally in society. In 1992, in Planned Parenthood v. Casey (505 U.S. 833), the Supreme Court observed that, `[t]he ability of women to participate equally in the economic and social life of the Nation has been facilitated by their ability to control their reproductive lives.'.
(8) Even though the Roe v. Wade decision has stood for more than 34 years, there are increasing threats to reproductive health and freedom emerging from all branches and levels of government. In 2006, South Dakota became the first State in more than 15 years to enact a ban on abortion in nearly all circumstances. Supporters of this ban have admitted it is an attempt to directly challenge Roe in the courts. Other States are considering similar bans.
(9) Further threatening Roe, the Supreme Court recently upheld the first-ever Federal ban on an abortion procedure, which has no exception to protect a woman's health. The majority decision in Gonzales v. Carhart (05-380, slip op. April 18, 2007) and Gonzales v. Planned Parenthood Federation of America fails to protect a woman's health, a core tenet of Roe v. Wade. Dissenting in that case, Justice Ginsburg called the majority's opinion `alarming', and stated that, `[f]or the first time since Roe, the Court blesses a prohibition with no exception safeguarding a woman's health'. Further, she said, the Federal ban `and the Court's defense of it cannot be understood as anything other than an effort to chip away at a right declared again and again by this Court'.
(10) Legal and practical barriers to the full range of reproductive services endanger women's health and lives. Incremental restrictions on the right to choose imposed by Congress and State legislatures have made access to reproductive care extremely difficult, if not impossible, for many women across the country. Currently, 87 percent of the counties in the United States have no abortion provider.
(11) While abortion should remain safe and legal, women should also have more meaningful access to family planning services that prevent unintended pregnancies, thereby reducing the need for abortion.
(12) To guarantee the protections of Roe v. Wade, Federal legislation is necessary.
(13) Although Congress may not create constitutional rights without amending the Constitution, Congress may, where authorized by its enumerated powers and not prohibited by the Constitution, enact legislation to create and secure statutory rights in areas of legitimate national concern.
(14) Congress has the affirmative power under section 8 of article I of the Constitution and section 5 of the 14th amendment to the Constitution to enact legislation to facilitate interstate commerce and to prevent State interference with interstate commerce, liberty, or equal protection of the laws.
(15) Federal protection of a woman's right to choose to prevent or terminate a pregnancy falls within this affirmative power of Congress, in part, because--
(A) many women cross State lines to obtain abortions and many more would be forced to do so absent a constitutional right or Federal protection;
(B) reproductive health clinics are commercial actors that regularly purchase medicine, medical equipment, and other necessary supplies from out-of-State suppliers; and
(C) reproductive health clinics employ doctors, nurses, and other personnel who travel across State lines in order to provide reproductive health services to patients.
SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.
In this Act:
(1) GOVERNMENT- The term `government' includes a branch, department, agency, instrumentality, or official (or other individual acting under color of law) of the United States, a State, or a subdivision of a State.
(2) STATE- The term `State' means each of the States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and each territory or possession of the United States.
(3) VIABILITY- The term `viability' means that stage of pregnancy when, in the best medical judgment of the attending physician based on the particular medical facts of the case before the physician, there is a reasonable likelihood of the sustained survival of the fetus outside of the woman.
SEC. 4. INTERFERENCE WITH REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH PROHIBITED.
(a) Statement of Policy- It is the policy of the United States that every woman has the fundamental right to choose to bear a child, to terminate a pregnancy prior to fetal viability, or to terminate a pregnancy after fetal viability when necessary to protect the life or health of the woman.
(b) Prohibition of Interference- A government may not--
(1) deny or interfere with a woman's right to choose--
(A) to bear a child;
(B) to terminate a pregnancy prior to viability; or
(C) to terminate a pregnancy after viability where termination is necessary to protect the life or health of the woman; or
(2) discriminate against the exercise of the rights set forth in paragraph (1) in the regulation or provision of benefits, facilities, services, or information.
(c) Civil Action- An individual aggrieved by a violation of this section may obtain appropriate relief (including relief against a government) in a civil action.
SEC. 5. SEVERABILITY.
If any provision of this Act, or the application of such provision to any person or circumstance, is held to be unconstitutional, the remainder of this Act, or the application of such provision to persons or circumstances other than those as to which the provision is held to be unconstitutional, shall not be affected thereby.
SEC. 6. RETROACTIVE EFFECT.
This Act applies to every Federal, State, and local statute, ordinance, regulation, administrative order, decision, policy, practice, or other action enacted, adopted, or implemented before, on, or after the date of enactment of this Act.
For Øbama to be able to sign that as his first act, the 111th Congress would have to consider a brand new bill, route it through committee, and make it through conference between 3 January and 19 January of 2009.
In other words, Ø was simply blowing smoke up the collective rear ends of Planned Parenthood. The fact that he would "want" to sign such a bill as his first act is disturbing; however, it was an empty promise to PP and an empty threat to us pro-lifers.
Do I sound cynical? Well, I am.
However, such a monstrous bill COULD become a reality if the radical left succeed in taking over the White House and gaining a supermajority in the Congress. We need to exercise appropriate caution and diligence to make sure they don't.
It is possible that FOCA has been sitting still because the dems know that they couldn't overturn a Bush veto? Is it possible they'd have the Numbers they need for a Pres. 0bama to sign?
When the proabortion gang cry it’s for the life of the mother...why are we not answering back that, that is why doctors perform C-sections! Which saves the lives of both mom and baby. I know I’ve had 2 c-sections to save the lives of my sons...oh, I forgot I actually WANTED my children, and these people don’t.
You Tube - Over 1,500 Black Babies Per Day Are Killed In The USA / Pro-Life Anti-Abortion Video PSA
Sorry for the delay in answering.
Right now (2007-2008), we have the 110th Congress. Starting on the 3rd of January, 2009, we will have the 111th Congress. Any legislative action that hasn't been completed by the end of 2008 will have to completely start over from scratch after the 111th Congress is sworn in.
Just to emphasize, though, the bill never even came up for a vote. Even in committee.
But next time...who knows.