of Choice Act
The continued fight for life: The Freedom
of Choice Act
first thing I'd do as president is sign the Freedom of Choice Act.
That's the first thing that I'd do." -- Senator Barack Obama,
to the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, July 17, 2007
Barack Obama made a promise in the summer of 2007 to Planned Parenthood
supporters. The promise highlighted the signing of the Freedom of
Choice Act (FOCA). FOCA is a proposed federal law to nullify virtually
all federal and state limitations on abortion. President-elect Obama’s
statement was more than an empty pledge. He emphasized signing FOCA
will be the “first thing” he’ll do as president. Prolife people have
kept the Freedom of Choice Act from reaching any president’s desk.
the Freedom of Choice Act:
“Freedom of Choice Act” would invalidate Michigan’s commonsense laws
which have been passed since the two U.S. Supreme Court decisions,
Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, legalized abortion through all nine
months of pregnancy.
so-called Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) S. 1173, sponsored by Senator
Barbara Boxer (D- Ca.), would invalidate any federal, state, or local
government law, regulation, policy, or action that would "deny or
interfere with" a woman's access to abortion prior to "viability,"
or which would "discriminate against the exercise of" this right in
the regulation or provision of any "benefits, facilities, services,
ban would apply absolutely prior to fetal "viability," and also apply
after "viability" to any abortion sought on grounds of "health," which
is not defined in the bill and which therefore would include any physical
or emotional factor whatsoever.
is sometimes referred to as a bill to "codify Roe v. Wade." This is
misleading because the sponsors of the bill have acknowledged that
it would invalidate many laws that have been upheld by the U.S. Supreme
Court under Roe v. Wade, including laws restricting government funding
of abortion, limits on abortion in public or military facilities,
full-disclosure counseling requirements, and bans on partial-birth
abortion. It would also invalidate all laws requiring parental or
judicial notification or consent for abortions performed on minors,
laws that permit health care providers to opt out of participation
in abortion on conscience grounds, laws prohibiting non-physicians
from performing abortions, and waiting periods. The House companion
bill, sponsored by Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), is H.R. 1964.
FOCA passed, the following laws in Michigan may be in jeopardy: Ultrasound
Viewing Option; Abortion Prepayment Prohibition; Informed Consent
for Abortion; Clinic Regulations; Abortion Complications Reporting;
Abortion Coverage for State Employees; Parental Consent for Abortion;
Conscience Clause for Abortion; and our Ban on Medicaid Abortion Coverage.
earlier version of the Freedom of Choice Act was pushed by pro-abortion
forces beginning in the late 1980s. When President Bill Clinton, a
FOCA supporter, took office in January 1993, Planned Parenthood predicted
that the FOCA would be law within six months. But the bill died after
an education and lobbying campaign.
Enthusiasm for the original FOCA faded after Republicans took control
of the House of Representatives in the 1994 election.
most recent version of FOCA was introduced in April 2007 following
the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Gonzales v. Carhart. Gonzales
v. Carhart upheld the federal ban on partial-birth abortion.
Freedom of Choice Act cannot be signed into law until it passes through
both chambers of Congress, the U.S. House and the U.S. Senate. Right
to Life of Michigan will be working closely with National Right to
Life to monitor this legislation and to lobby our lawmakers. Currently,
Right to Life of Michigan is making an on-line petition available.
This petition allows the people of Michigan to be on record regarding
their opposition to the Freedom of Choice Act. We also encourage you
to tell a friend about the Freedom of Choice Act and the promise made
by President-elect Obama.
www.rtl.org to sign up to receive
e-mail updates regarding the Freedom of Choice Act and other pertinent
life centered information.
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