Legislation

Terry Planning Sit-In and Arrests At Boehner's Office Over Planned Parenthood Funding

Shortly after the last election, Randall Terry and his crew of militant anti-choice activists met with Speaker of the House John Boehner's Chief of Staff in order to deliver their "demand that Republicans who won the House of Representatives hasten the end of legalized child killing in America."

Among the threats they delivered was that if "Boehner does not defund Planned Parenthood, we will find people to run against him and other Republicans in the primaries of 2012. Defunding Planned Parenthood is non-negotiable."

Last week, the House voted to do just that but that is not enough for Terry, who fears that the Senate will not follow suit and that funding will be restored when the legislation goes to Conference Committee.  As such, Terry and crew are heading back to Boehner's office tomorrow for a sit-in to demand that House Republicans make this "a hill to die on":

We have NO REASON to believe that Mr. Boehner and Co. will insure that the House members on the Conference Committee will make this "a hill to die on." Therefore, pro-lifers and tea party activists should continue forward as if today's vote was little more than a "maybe" or even a cruel ruse regarding defunding Planned Parenthood.

Statement of Randall Terry, Founder, Operation Rescue:

"We have been lied to and betrayed by Republicans in power for decades. For example, from 2000 to 2006 the GOP controlled the White House, the Senate, and the U.S. House. During that time, they continued to fund Planned Parenthood with billions of dollars, while they claimed to be 'pro-life.' Mr. Boehner was part of that ongoing hypocrisy.

"The question is this: Will Sheriff Boehner guarantee that the House members of the Conference Committee will not allow Planned Parenthood funding to be restored? If not, this is all a scam.

Terry Planning Sit-In and Arrests At Boehner's Office Over Planned Parenthood Funding

Shortly after the last election, Randall Terry and his crew of militant anti-choice activists met with Speaker of the House John Boehner's Chief of Staff in order to deliver their "demand that Republicans who won the House of Representatives hasten the end of legalized child killing in America."

Among the threats they delivered was that if "Boehner does not defund Planned Parenthood, we will find people to run against him and other Republicans in the primaries of 2012. Defunding Planned Parenthood is non-negotiable."

Last week, the House voted to do just that but that is not enough for Terry, who fears that the Senate will not follow suit and that funding will be restored when the legislation goes to Conference Committee.  As such, Terry and crew are heading back to Boehner's office tomorrow for a sit-in to demand that House Republicans make this "a hill to die on":

We have NO REASON to believe that Mr. Boehner and Co. will insure that the House members on the Conference Committee will make this "a hill to die on." Therefore, pro-lifers and tea party activists should continue forward as if today's vote was little more than a "maybe" or even a cruel ruse regarding defunding Planned Parenthood.

Statement of Randall Terry, Founder, Operation Rescue:

"We have been lied to and betrayed by Republicans in power for decades. For example, from 2000 to 2006 the GOP controlled the White House, the Senate, and the U.S. House. During that time, they continued to fund Planned Parenthood with billions of dollars, while they claimed to be 'pro-life.' Mr. Boehner was part of that ongoing hypocrisy.

"The question is this: Will Sheriff Boehner guarantee that the House members of the Conference Committee will not allow Planned Parenthood funding to be restored? If not, this is all a scam.

Right-Wing Leaders Hail House Vote to Strip Planned Parenthood of Funding

The amendment to block funding to Planned Parenthood passed by a vote of 240-185, achieving a long-held goal of Religious Right groups that vehemently oppose the healthcare organization. During the debate, House Republicans frequently touted the hoax videos produced by the extreme group Live Action and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) even pledged to go after Planned Parenthood’s non-profit status.

Taxpayer funding of abortion is already barred under federal law, and this new amendment would stop Planned Parenthood from receiving funds to provide the medical services which comprise the vast majority of the group’s work, like cancer screenings, tests for sexually transmitted infections, and family healthcare.

But an amendment devastating women’s healthcare is a reason to celebrate for anti-choice leaders and their allies in Congress:

Mike Pence:

This afternoon’s vote is a victory for taxpayers and a victory for life. By banning federal funding to Planned Parenthood, Congress has taken a stand for millions of Americans who believe their tax dollars should not be used to subsidize the largest abortion provider in America.

I commend my colleagues in both parties for taking a stand for taxpayers and a stand for life. I encourage my colleagues in the Senate to support this legislation and end federal funding of Planned Parenthood once and for all.

Marjorie Dannenfelser, Susan B. Anthony List:

“Ending taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood is a non-negotiable,” said SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “It must be a top priority in the Continuing Resolution battle. Taxpayers have strongly rejected their complicity with Planned Parenthood in the sex trafficking of underage girls. Pro-life America demands that our leaders in the Senate step up and take on this fight and that the House leadership holds its ground. Americans have spoken and the time to defund Planned Parenthood, a habitual and unapologetic ally of those who deal in the exploitation of minors, is now. This is a black and white issue and we will accept nothing less than the total defunding of Planned Parenthood in the Continuing Resolution.”

Tony Perkins, Family Research Council:

“We commend Mike Pence and the bipartisan majority of House Members who stood with the American people in saying that enough is enough. Planned Parenthood, a scandal-plagued abortion organization, must be held accountable for abusing innocent young victims while receiving hundreds of millions in federal dollars each year.

“The fact that Planned Parenthood not only left minor girls trapped in prostitution, but encouraged it, shows an incredible lack of humanity on their part. What goes on behind the windowless offices of Planned Parenthood, as Live Action's videos show, is both saddening and shocking, but the fact that it has often been done with taxpayer dollars is indefensible.”

National Right to Life Committee:

“This landmark vote demonstrates that most House members now recognize Planned Parenthood is a hyper-political, under-regulated, out-of-control mega-marketer of abortion as a method of birth control,” said NRLC Legislative Director Douglas Johnson.



“Now senators, too, will go on record on whether to push the snout of this bloated abortion mega-marketer, Planned Parenthood, out of the U.S. Treasury feeding trough,” said NRLC's Johnson.

Jay Sekulow, American Center for Law and Justice:

“There’s no better place to begin the budget cutting process, than putting a stop to funding Planned Parenthood,” said Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel of the ACLJ. “It’s stunning that Planned Parenthood receives more than $360 million dollars a year in federal taxpayer funds. According to its own filings, Planned Parenthood reported more than 330,000 abortions in 2009 alone, a number that continues to climb. By receiving this windfall of federal funds, Planned Parenthood is able to free-up other resources enabling them to continue to promote and expand their pro-abortion agenda. The approval of the Pence Amendment in the House is long overdue and sends a strong message - American taxpayers are no longer willing to subsidize the nation's largest abortion provider.”

Even GOProud tried to take credit and tweeted:

Victory! @GOPROUD supported effort to defund Planned Parenthood passes the House. #tcot

Update:

Traditional Values Coalition:

Planned Parenthood is not in the industry of health care, nor has it ever been. Just this year, Planned Parenthood demanded that all Planned Parenthood clinics will offer abortions -- no exceptions. The Pence Amendment will strip $170 million in Title X funding intended for health care services away from the national abortion provider from Planned Parenthood, and I couldn’t be happier.

As the Pence Amendment inevitably reaches the U.S. Senate, taxpayers need to strenuously remind their lawmakers that each taxpayer dollar spent on Planned Parenthood frees up one dollar for Planned Parenthood to spend on its abortion arm. Those who defend Planned Parenthood’s abortion business are on the wrong side of history and the American taxpayer.

Priests for Life:

As illustrated by the outcome of this afternoon’s vote, members of the newly-elected House of Representatives are moving forward with various bills to defund the abortion industry. The argument here is not simply that we should not be forced to pay for things with which we disagree. The argument is that we should not pay for the killing of children. Remember, many of the most ardent supporters of abortion admit that it kills a child. Our government, indeed our civilization, is built on the premise that life is to be protected, not destroyed.

Right-Wing Leaders Hail House Vote to Strip Planned Parenthood of Funding

The amendment to block funding to Planned Parenthood passed by a vote of 240-185, achieving a long-held goal of Religious Right groups that vehemently oppose the healthcare organization. During the debate, House Republicans frequently touted the hoax videos produced by the extreme group Live Action and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) even pledged to go after Planned Parenthood’s non-profit status.

Taxpayer funding of abortion is already barred under federal law, and this new amendment would stop Planned Parenthood from receiving funds to provide the medical services which comprise the vast majority of the group’s work, like cancer screenings, tests for sexually transmitted infections, and family healthcare.

But an amendment devastating women’s healthcare is a reason to celebrate for anti-choice leaders and their allies in Congress:

Mike Pence:

This afternoon’s vote is a victory for taxpayers and a victory for life. By banning federal funding to Planned Parenthood, Congress has taken a stand for millions of Americans who believe their tax dollars should not be used to subsidize the largest abortion provider in America.

I commend my colleagues in both parties for taking a stand for taxpayers and a stand for life. I encourage my colleagues in the Senate to support this legislation and end federal funding of Planned Parenthood once and for all.

Marjorie Dannenfelser, Susan B. Anthony List:

“Ending taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood is a non-negotiable,” said SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “It must be a top priority in the Continuing Resolution battle. Taxpayers have strongly rejected their complicity with Planned Parenthood in the sex trafficking of underage girls. Pro-life America demands that our leaders in the Senate step up and take on this fight and that the House leadership holds its ground. Americans have spoken and the time to defund Planned Parenthood, a habitual and unapologetic ally of those who deal in the exploitation of minors, is now. This is a black and white issue and we will accept nothing less than the total defunding of Planned Parenthood in the Continuing Resolution.”

Tony Perkins, Family Research Council:

“We commend Mike Pence and the bipartisan majority of House Members who stood with the American people in saying that enough is enough. Planned Parenthood, a scandal-plagued abortion organization, must be held accountable for abusing innocent young victims while receiving hundreds of millions in federal dollars each year.

“The fact that Planned Parenthood not only left minor girls trapped in prostitution, but encouraged it, shows an incredible lack of humanity on their part. What goes on behind the windowless offices of Planned Parenthood, as Live Action's videos show, is both saddening and shocking, but the fact that it has often been done with taxpayer dollars is indefensible.”

National Right to Life Committee:

“This landmark vote demonstrates that most House members now recognize Planned Parenthood is a hyper-political, under-regulated, out-of-control mega-marketer of abortion as a method of birth control,” said NRLC Legislative Director Douglas Johnson.



“Now senators, too, will go on record on whether to push the snout of this bloated abortion mega-marketer, Planned Parenthood, out of the U.S. Treasury feeding trough,” said NRLC's Johnson.

Jay Sekulow, American Center for Law and Justice:

“There’s no better place to begin the budget cutting process, than putting a stop to funding Planned Parenthood,” said Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel of the ACLJ. “It’s stunning that Planned Parenthood receives more than $360 million dollars a year in federal taxpayer funds. According to its own filings, Planned Parenthood reported more than 330,000 abortions in 2009 alone, a number that continues to climb. By receiving this windfall of federal funds, Planned Parenthood is able to free-up other resources enabling them to continue to promote and expand their pro-abortion agenda. The approval of the Pence Amendment in the House is long overdue and sends a strong message - American taxpayers are no longer willing to subsidize the nation's largest abortion provider.”

Even GOProud tried to take credit and tweeted:

Victory! @GOPROUD supported effort to defund Planned Parenthood passes the House. #tcot

Update:

Traditional Values Coalition:

Planned Parenthood is not in the industry of health care, nor has it ever been. Just this year, Planned Parenthood demanded that all Planned Parenthood clinics will offer abortions -- no exceptions. The Pence Amendment will strip $170 million in Title X funding intended for health care services away from the national abortion provider from Planned Parenthood, and I couldn’t be happier.

As the Pence Amendment inevitably reaches the U.S. Senate, taxpayers need to strenuously remind their lawmakers that each taxpayer dollar spent on Planned Parenthood frees up one dollar for Planned Parenthood to spend on its abortion arm. Those who defend Planned Parenthood’s abortion business are on the wrong side of history and the American taxpayer.

Priests for Life:

As illustrated by the outcome of this afternoon’s vote, members of the newly-elected House of Representatives are moving forward with various bills to defund the abortion industry. The argument here is not simply that we should not be forced to pay for things with which we disagree. The argument is that we should not pay for the killing of children. Remember, many of the most ardent supporters of abortion admit that it kills a child. Our government, indeed our civilization, is built on the premise that life is to be protected, not destroyed.

The Republican Nanny State Strikes Again

During last week's CPAC, Grover Norquist spoke on a panel entitled "It's the Spending, Stupid!" during which he made the claim that what really unites the conservative movement is the desire to just be left alone.  Even social conservatives, he claimed, really just want to be left alone to pray, raise their families, and practice their religion as they see fit ... which made me laugh, because we all know that is not the case at all. 

As evidence, all me to point to Georgia, which is only one of three states in the nation to prohibits the sale of alcohol on Sunday. Legislation was introduced that would have repealed that prohibition and let voters decide via referendum whether their cities or counties would allow retailers to sell alcohol on Sundays and appeared on the fast-track to passage. 

And why wouldn't it?  Republicans ought to love it because it a) limits government and b) gives voters the choice to decide for themselves. 

But then the Georgia Christian Coalition mobilized and started "suggesting that our supporters tell their city councilman or commissioner to call their state senator and say alcohol is an issue that divides us. Just leave Sunday alone."

And that was the end of that:

The chances of a Sunday sales bill passing this year took a major hit on Thursday when Senate Republican leaders said the measure lacks the support necessary among the majority caucus.

...

The bill, SB 10, would allow local governments to allow their voters to decide whether to allow sales of beer, wine and liquor in stores on Sundays.

It appeared to finally have the votes to pass after years of failure during Gov. Sonny Perdue's administration. Perdue, who left office this year, had promised to veto it. But Gov. Nathan Deal has said he would allow it to become law.

But in the past two weeks, Republican support for the bill in the Senate began to crumble as social conservatives, including the Christian Coalition, marshaled opposition to it.

The Republican Nanny State Strikes Again

During last week's CPAC, Grover Norquist spoke on a panel entitled "It's the Spending, Stupid!" during which he made the claim that what really unites the conservative movement is the desire to just be left alone.  Even social conservatives, he claimed, really just want to be left alone to pray, raise their families, and practice their religion as they see fit ... which made me laugh, because we all know that is not the case at all. 

As evidence, all me to point to Georgia, which is only one of three states in the nation to prohibits the sale of alcohol on Sunday. Legislation was introduced that would have repealed that prohibition and let voters decide via referendum whether their cities or counties would allow retailers to sell alcohol on Sundays and appeared on the fast-track to passage. 

And why wouldn't it?  Republicans ought to love it because it a) limits government and b) gives voters the choice to decide for themselves. 

But then the Georgia Christian Coalition mobilized and started "suggesting that our supporters tell their city councilman or commissioner to call their state senator and say alcohol is an issue that divides us. Just leave Sunday alone."

And that was the end of that:

The chances of a Sunday sales bill passing this year took a major hit on Thursday when Senate Republican leaders said the measure lacks the support necessary among the majority caucus.

...

The bill, SB 10, would allow local governments to allow their voters to decide whether to allow sales of beer, wine and liquor in stores on Sundays.

It appeared to finally have the votes to pass after years of failure during Gov. Sonny Perdue's administration. Perdue, who left office this year, had promised to veto it. But Gov. Nathan Deal has said he would allow it to become law.

But in the past two weeks, Republican support for the bill in the Senate began to crumble as social conservatives, including the Christian Coalition, marshaled opposition to it.

South Dakota Abortion Bill Forces Women to Seek Counseling at Anti-Choice Centers

While the South Dakota state legislature announced today that it will shelve a radical bill that would open the door to legalizing the murder of doctors who perform abortions, the state is still weighing other legislation that would significantly curtail reproductive rights. NARAL Pro-Choice America says that South Dakota already has some of the most draconian laws on the books that constrain women’s access to reproductive health services, including biased counseling and 24 hour waiting periods, even though the state’s only clinic which offers abortion coverage has to fly in a doctor once a week to see patients. While voters twice rejected a comprehensive ban on abortion in the 2006 and 2008 referendums, the Republican-controlled legislature continues to create new burdens for women.

A measure passed by the State House Judiciary Committee would require women seeking an abortion to first visit a “pregnancy help center,” also known as a crisis pregnancy center (CPC), where they must inform women of “the risk factors” and “complications associated with abortion,” and “have a private interview to discuss her circumstances that may subject her decision to coercion.”

The legislation, introduced by Republican State Rep. Roger Hunt, says that such centers can be either “secular or faith based” and the bill only approves a center that does not “perform abortions and is not affiliated with any physician or entity that performs abortions, and does not now refer pregnant mothers for abortions, and has not referred any pregnant mother for abortions for the three-year period.”

A 2006 Congressional report found that such pregnancy centers frequently employ misleading and fallacious information to link abortion to breast cancer, infertility and other fertility problems, and severe psychological problems such as an increased chance of suicide. “The vast majority of the federally funded pregnancy resource centers contacted during the investigation provided information about the risks of abortion that was false or misleading,” according to the investigation, “In many cases, this information was grossly inaccurate or distorted.”

The National Abortion Federation also notes that such centers are mostly staffed by volunteers whose “main qualifications are a commitment to Christianity and anti-choice beliefs,” rather than medical professionals, and “many CPCs are connected with religious organizations, but few disclose that fact in their advertising.” And a report by The Daily Beast looked into the propaganda tools and medically-unsound practices commonplace at such pregnancy centers.

But if State Rep. Hurt gets his way, South Dakota may force women looking to terminate their pregnancy to first gain the approval of the staff of such biased centers, on top of an existing 24 hour waiting period. Since a doctor that provides abortion procedures is only available in the entire state just once a week, this bill would gravely endanger the already-limited access women have to reproductive services.

South Dakota Abortion Bill Forces Women to Seek Counseling at Anti-Choice Centers

While the South Dakota state legislature announced today that it will shelve a radical bill that would open the door to legalizing the murder of doctors who perform abortions, the state is still weighing other legislation that would significantly curtail reproductive rights. NARAL Pro-Choice America says that South Dakota already has some of the most draconian laws on the books that constrain women’s access to reproductive health services, including biased counseling and 24 hour waiting periods, even though the state’s only clinic which offers abortion coverage has to fly in a doctor once a week to see patients. While voters twice rejected a comprehensive ban on abortion in the 2006 and 2008 referendums, the Republican-controlled legislature continues to create new burdens for women.

A measure passed by the State House Judiciary Committee would require women seeking an abortion to first visit a “pregnancy help center,” also known as a crisis pregnancy center (CPC), where they must inform women of “the risk factors” and “complications associated with abortion,” and “have a private interview to discuss her circumstances that may subject her decision to coercion.”

The legislation, introduced by Republican State Rep. Roger Hunt, says that such centers can be either “secular or faith based” and the bill only approves a center that does not “perform abortions and is not affiliated with any physician or entity that performs abortions, and does not now refer pregnant mothers for abortions, and has not referred any pregnant mother for abortions for the three-year period.”

A 2006 Congressional report found that such pregnancy centers frequently employ misleading and fallacious information to link abortion to breast cancer, infertility and other fertility problems, and severe psychological problems such as an increased chance of suicide. “The vast majority of the federally funded pregnancy resource centers contacted during the investigation provided information about the risks of abortion that was false or misleading,” according to the investigation, “In many cases, this information was grossly inaccurate or distorted.”

The National Abortion Federation also notes that such centers are mostly staffed by volunteers whose “main qualifications are a commitment to Christianity and anti-choice beliefs,” rather than medical professionals, and “many CPCs are connected with religious organizations, but few disclose that fact in their advertising.” And a report by The Daily Beast looked into the propaganda tools and medically-unsound practices commonplace at such pregnancy centers.

But if State Rep. Hurt gets his way, South Dakota may force women looking to terminate their pregnancy to first gain the approval of the staff of such biased centers, on top of an existing 24 hour waiting period. Since a doctor that provides abortion procedures is only available in the entire state just once a week, this bill would gravely endanger the already-limited access women have to reproductive services.

Kern Introduces Creationist Bill So Science Teachers Can Teach "Pure Science"

Oklahoma state Rep. Sally Kern wants to make it clear that her new legislation protecting the rights of science teachers to "teach all science instead of just the Darwin model" is in no way an attempt to introduce creationism or Intelligent Design into the classroom.

It is, in fact, just an attempt to let teachers teach "pure science" about "all of evolution" ... and apparently Kern just wants the teaching of "all of evolution" to include the religious theories about how evolution is utterly false

"It stays 100 miles away from creationism and ID. It's not in any way trying to get those in there," said Rep. Sally Kern, (R) Oklahoma City.

Representative Sally Kern said her bill doesn't change any current science curriculum or textbook and doesn't alter Oklahoma's past standards for science education. The bill simply protects teachers who feel they don't have the freedom to fully explore controversial science topics.

"Some people say there's no problem. Yes, there is. I have some surveys that show that many teachers fear for their jobs. That they will be reprimanded or lose their jobs if they teach just pure science. If they teach all of science instead of just the Darwin model," said Rep. Kern.

...

"This bill is not anti-evolution. This bill is ‘Let's teach all of evolution.' Let's teach our children how to have inquiring minds. Let's teach them how to be critical thinkers, to look at both sides of an issue, scientific issue, and be able to examine what is the plausible thing there," said Kern.

Kern Introduces Creationist Bill So Science Teachers Can Teach "Pure Science"

Oklahoma state Rep. Sally Kern wants to make it clear that her new legislation protecting the rights of science teachers to "teach all science instead of just the Darwin model" is in no way an attempt to introduce creationism or Intelligent Design into the classroom.

It is, in fact, just an attempt to let teachers teach "pure science" about "all of evolution" ... and apparently Kern just wants the teaching of "all of evolution" to include the religious theories about how evolution is utterly false

"It stays 100 miles away from creationism and ID. It's not in any way trying to get those in there," said Rep. Sally Kern, (R) Oklahoma City.

Representative Sally Kern said her bill doesn't change any current science curriculum or textbook and doesn't alter Oklahoma's past standards for science education. The bill simply protects teachers who feel they don't have the freedom to fully explore controversial science topics.

"Some people say there's no problem. Yes, there is. I have some surveys that show that many teachers fear for their jobs. That they will be reprimanded or lose their jobs if they teach just pure science. If they teach all of science instead of just the Darwin model," said Rep. Kern.

...

"This bill is not anti-evolution. This bill is ‘Let's teach all of evolution.' Let's teach our children how to have inquiring minds. Let's teach them how to be critical thinkers, to look at both sides of an issue, scientific issue, and be able to examine what is the plausible thing there," said Kern.

Tony Perkins Embraces the Extreme Personhood Movement

The anti-choice campaign to pass “Personhood Amendments,” the radical plan once shunned by major Religious Right organizations, continues to gain prominent supporters within the conservative movement. Following in the footsteps of other right-wing leaders like Bryan Fischer, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins has come out in favor of the Personhood Amendment, which would give legal rights to zygotes and criminalize abortion, stem-cell research, common forms of birth control and in vitro fertilization.

As voters consistently voted down Personhood Amendments by lopsided margins in Colorado, leading groups like National Right to Life and Americans United for Life refused to back the Amendment and the Colorado Eagle Forum warned allies in 2009 that the Personhood movement intends to “spread their disaster to key swing states like Florida, Missouri, Nevada and Montana.”

And now the Personhood movement is doing exactly that, but this time with the support of major Religious Right figures, and even Republican politicians.

Fischer, the American Family Association, and the Liberty Counsel have come out strongly in favor of the Personhood Amendment that will be on Mississippi’s November ballot, as have top Republicans like Senator Roger Wicker and Congressman Alan Nunnelee.

In Georgia, Perkins praised the Personhood Amendment introduced by state Sen. Barry Loudermilk, saying, “The Georgia Personhood Amendment is a reflection of a growing pro-life sentiment across the country.”

But in 2007, James Bopp, the General Counsel for the National Right to Life Committee, criticized the Personhood measure in Georgia, known as the Human Life Amendment (HLA), in a legal memo. Warning of “the inevitable striking down” of the amendment and that “significant damage would be done,” Bopp said that “the proposed HLA has serious flaws and is not a wise use of pro-life resources at this time.”

Georgia and Mississippi aren’t the only states where the Personhood movement is moving into high gear.

The State House in North Dakota just passed a personhood bill that one supporter said “should shut down” the state’s last clinic that provides abortion services, and a subcommittee in the Iowa State House also approved a personhood bill. Personhood USA, the leading advocacy organization, has pledged to mount fights in states like Texas, Oklahoma, and Montana as well.

Tony Perkins Embraces the Extreme Personhood Movement

The anti-choice campaign to pass “Personhood Amendments,” the radical plan once shunned by major Religious Right organizations, continues to gain prominent supporters within the conservative movement. Following in the footsteps of other right-wing leaders like Bryan Fischer, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins has come out in favor of the Personhood Amendment, which would give legal rights to zygotes and criminalize abortion, stem-cell research, common forms of birth control and in vitro fertilization.

As voters consistently voted down Personhood Amendments by lopsided margins in Colorado, leading groups like National Right to Life and Americans United for Life refused to back the Amendment and the Colorado Eagle Forum warned allies in 2009 that the Personhood movement intends to “spread their disaster to key swing states like Florida, Missouri, Nevada and Montana.”

And now the Personhood movement is doing exactly that, but this time with the support of major Religious Right figures, and even Republican politicians.

Fischer, the American Family Association, and the Liberty Counsel have come out strongly in favor of the Personhood Amendment that will be on Mississippi’s November ballot, as have top Republicans like Senator Roger Wicker and Congressman Alan Nunnelee.

In Georgia, Perkins praised the Personhood Amendment introduced by state Sen. Barry Loudermilk, saying, “The Georgia Personhood Amendment is a reflection of a growing pro-life sentiment across the country.”

But in 2007, James Bopp, the General Counsel for the National Right to Life Committee, criticized the Personhood measure in Georgia, known as the Human Life Amendment (HLA), in a legal memo. Warning of “the inevitable striking down” of the amendment and that “significant damage would be done,” Bopp said that “the proposed HLA has serious flaws and is not a wise use of pro-life resources at this time.”

Georgia and Mississippi aren’t the only states where the Personhood movement is moving into high gear.

The State House in North Dakota just passed a personhood bill that one supporter said “should shut down” the state’s last clinic that provides abortion services, and a subcommittee in the Iowa State House also approved a personhood bill. Personhood USA, the leading advocacy organization, has pledged to mount fights in states like Texas, Oklahoma, and Montana as well.

CPAC Anti-Choice Panel Pledges to "Drive" GOP's Agenda

CPAC’s anti-abortion rights panel “The Pro-Life Movement: Plans and Goals” was galvanized over the election of a Republican-led House, believing that the GOP leadership was committed to passing anti-choice legislation.

Hosted by Tim Goeglein, the head of Focus on the Family’s policy arm CitizenLink and a former Bush Administration staffer, the panel focused on attacking the health care reform law, Planned Parenthood, and Republicans who aren’t categorically anti-choice.

According to Goeglein, “the pro-life movement is becoming younger,” and the panel featured young leaders like Anna Franzonello of Americans United for Life, Kristan Hawkins of Students for Life, and activist Erin DeLullo.

Goeglein tried to balance his belief that the anti-choice movement was gaining support and energy with his fear that social conservatives may devolve into political obscurity and lose their place in the broader right-wing coalition. He said that smear-artist Lila Rose represents a “new generation” of the movement, but also anxiously insisted that the “pro-life and pro-traditional marriage” positions must “remain central to the conservative movement.”

DeLullo made the case that the anti-choice community needs to quickly mobilize against Republicans like Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels who proposed a “truce” on social issues. She maintained that the Club for Growth, a pro-corporate group best known for funding primary opponents against more moderate Republican incumbents, should serve as a model for a “permanent political organization” that is “dedicated fulltime to make sure the ‘anti-life’ vote is as suicidal as a vote to raise taxes.” “The right to life cannot be put on the backburner,” DeLullo said, arguing that the group must act now to stop “‘trucers’ like Mitch Daniels.” Of course, there are already a plethora of social conservative political action committees, but maybe DeLullo was making a plug for her own firm.

AUL’s Franzonello claimed that “abortion is the ultimate exploitation of women,” and discussed her vehement opposition to emergency contraception and legal exceptions for cases of rape and incest. She also floated the “death panel” conspiracy theory about health care reform, saying that the law jeopardizes the lives of “elderly and disabled persons,” along with pushing the debunked claim that it promotes taxpayer-subsidized abortions.

Later, Hawkins of Students for Life, a self-declared “abortion abolitionist,” discussed ways anti-choice groups can drive the conservative movement. She noted that while young voters tend to generally hold liberal and Democratic-leaning views, they tend to be more opposed to reproductive rights than prior generations. The abortion issue, Hawkins argued, gives right-wing organizations an opening among young voters. Hawkins said that young voters are increasingly opposed to legal abortion because “Planned Parenthood nearly snuffed us out of existence,” and then allegedly tried to coerce young women on college campuses to have abortions.

Hawkins lavished praise on “prayer warriors” and Lila Rose, calling her “a modern day muckraker” who will “go down in history” for her role smearing Planned Parenthood. She said that young anti-choice activists should embrace Rose’s tactics in order to get the attention of Republican politicians and Fox News, saying, “We can drive their agenda.”

CPAC Anti-Choice Panel Pledges to "Drive" GOP's Agenda

CPAC’s anti-abortion rights panel “The Pro-Life Movement: Plans and Goals” was galvanized over the election of a Republican-led House, believing that the GOP leadership was committed to passing anti-choice legislation.

Hosted by Tim Goeglein, the head of Focus on the Family’s policy arm CitizenLink and a former Bush Administration staffer, the panel focused on attacking the health care reform law, Planned Parenthood, and Republicans who aren’t categorically anti-choice.

According to Goeglein, “the pro-life movement is becoming younger,” and the panel featured young leaders like Anna Franzonello of Americans United for Life, Kristan Hawkins of Students for Life, and activist Erin DeLullo.

Goeglein tried to balance his belief that the anti-choice movement was gaining support and energy with his fear that social conservatives may devolve into political obscurity and lose their place in the broader right-wing coalition. He said that smear-artist Lila Rose represents a “new generation” of the movement, but also anxiously insisted that the “pro-life and pro-traditional marriage” positions must “remain central to the conservative movement.”

DeLullo made the case that the anti-choice community needs to quickly mobilize against Republicans like Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels who proposed a “truce” on social issues. She maintained that the Club for Growth, a pro-corporate group best known for funding primary opponents against more moderate Republican incumbents, should serve as a model for a “permanent political organization” that is “dedicated fulltime to make sure the ‘anti-life’ vote is as suicidal as a vote to raise taxes.” “The right to life cannot be put on the backburner,” DeLullo said, arguing that the group must act now to stop “‘trucers’ like Mitch Daniels.” Of course, there are already a plethora of social conservative political action committees, but maybe DeLullo was making a plug for her own firm.

AUL’s Franzonello claimed that “abortion is the ultimate exploitation of women,” and discussed her vehement opposition to emergency contraception and legal exceptions for cases of rape and incest. She also floated the “death panel” conspiracy theory about health care reform, saying that the law jeopardizes the lives of “elderly and disabled persons,” along with pushing the debunked claim that it promotes taxpayer-subsidized abortions.

Later, Hawkins of Students for Life, a self-declared “abortion abolitionist,” discussed ways anti-choice groups can drive the conservative movement. She noted that while young voters tend to generally hold liberal and Democratic-leaning views, they tend to be more opposed to reproductive rights than prior generations. The abortion issue, Hawkins argued, gives right-wing organizations an opening among young voters. Hawkins said that young voters are increasingly opposed to legal abortion because “Planned Parenthood nearly snuffed us out of existence,” and then allegedly tried to coerce young women on college campuses to have abortions.

Hawkins lavished praise on “prayer warriors” and Lila Rose, calling her “a modern day muckraker” who will “go down in history” for her role smearing Planned Parenthood. She said that young anti-choice activists should embrace Rose’s tactics in order to get the attention of Republican politicians and Fox News, saying, “We can drive their agenda.”

Boykin: "Everywhere I Go" People Ask "When Do We Take Up Arms" Against Obama

Last week, Glenn Beck invited Jerry Boykin onto his program to give his "expert" opinion on the uprising in Egypt and he is also listed among the invited speakers to the next Values Voter Summit:

So now might be a good time to repost this video he produced for Rick Joyner's Morningstar Ministries in which explained that President Obama is a Marxist who intends to create an army of Brownshirts loyal only to him though Health Care Reform legislation:

When he is not speaking to Beck or hobnobbing with Republican leaders at the Values Voter Summit, Boykin is working hand-in-hand with Joyner, preaching at this services, and sitting on the board of his Oak Initiative along with the likes of Janet Porter, Lou Sheldon, and Cindy Jacobs.

Joyner is a self-described prophet who is worried that President Obama might just be a treasonous Muslim and who roots his activism in dreams and visions about the imminent destruction of America:

For his part, Boykin delivers sermons to Joyner's follower with titles like "The Church Must Rise Up" in which he reports that everywhere he goes, people come up and ask him "when do we take up arms" against the Obama administration, which Boykin opposes because we are really involved in a spiritual battle:

Boykin: "Everywhere I Go" People Ask "When Do We Take Up Arms" Against Obama

Last week, Glenn Beck invited Jerry Boykin onto his program to give his "expert" opinion on the uprising in Egypt and he is also listed among the invited speakers to the next Values Voter Summit:

So now might be a good time to repost this video he produced for Rick Joyner's Morningstar Ministries in which explained that President Obama is a Marxist who intends to create an army of Brownshirts loyal only to him though Health Care Reform legislation:

When he is not speaking to Beck or hobnobbing with Republican leaders at the Values Voter Summit, Boykin is working hand-in-hand with Joyner, preaching at this services, and sitting on the board of his Oak Initiative along with the likes of Janet Porter, Lou Sheldon, and Cindy Jacobs.

Joyner is a self-described prophet who is worried that President Obama might just be a treasonous Muslim and who roots his activism in dreams and visions about the imminent destruction of America:

For his part, Boykin delivers sermons to Joyner's follower with titles like "The Church Must Rise Up" in which he reports that everywhere he goes, people come up and ask him "when do we take up arms" against the Obama administration, which Boykin opposes because we are really involved in a spiritual battle:

Porter's "Heartbeat Bill" Generates Interest In Other States

As we have noted several times in recent weeks, Faith 2 Action's Janet Porter has recently resurfaced in her native Ohio and is leading the effort to pass anti-choice legislation called "The Heartbeat Bill."

As part of this push, Porter has organized effort to send red, heart-shaped balloons to state legislators and today they are going to be delivered:

Thousands of shiny red heart-shaped balloons will be delivered to legislators today thanking (nearly half the House members who are co-sponsors) and encouraging the others to "Have a Heart! Support the Heartbeat Bill!" The Heartbeat Bill, which will be introduced this week, will legally protect all human beings in the state whose heartbeat can be heard.

...

Thousands of balloons, sent by residents from all over the state of Ohio and nation, will be delivered today to the 99 state representatives at the Vern Riffe State Office Tower.

"The Heartbeat Bill insures that if a heartbeat is detected, the baby is protected," states Janet (Folger) Porter, the president of Faith2Action and coordinator of bill-related efforts through www.HeartBeatBill.com. "You can help pass what will be the nation's most protective legislation when you go to www.HeartBeatBill.com," added Porter. "We're not going to wait any longer because the time to protect the babies is now."

Last week Porter and other activists, including Phll Burress of Citizens for Community Values, gathered for a press conference in a room filled with these balloons during which Porter reported that she is already getting calls from legislators in Oklahoma, Georgia, Texas, Kansas, and Arizona who are interested in introducing similar bills in their own states:

This is quite a change from Porter's recent activism wtih Cindy Jacobs praying that God will give Christians control over the media and every level of government:

Porter's "Heartbeat Bill" Generates Interest In Other States

As we have noted several times in recent weeks, Faith 2 Action's Janet Porter has recently resurfaced in her native Ohio and is leading the effort to pass anti-choice legislation called "The Heartbeat Bill."

As part of this push, Porter has organized effort to send red, heart-shaped balloons to state legislators and today they are going to be delivered:

Thousands of shiny red heart-shaped balloons will be delivered to legislators today thanking (nearly half the House members who are co-sponsors) and encouraging the others to "Have a Heart! Support the Heartbeat Bill!" The Heartbeat Bill, which will be introduced this week, will legally protect all human beings in the state whose heartbeat can be heard.

...

Thousands of balloons, sent by residents from all over the state of Ohio and nation, will be delivered today to the 99 state representatives at the Vern Riffe State Office Tower.

"The Heartbeat Bill insures that if a heartbeat is detected, the baby is protected," states Janet (Folger) Porter, the president of Faith2Action and coordinator of bill-related efforts through www.HeartBeatBill.com. "You can help pass what will be the nation's most protective legislation when you go to www.HeartBeatBill.com," added Porter. "We're not going to wait any longer because the time to protect the babies is now."

Last week Porter and other activists, including Phll Burress of Citizens for Community Values, gathered for a press conference in a room filled with these balloons during which Porter reported that she is already getting calls from legislators in Oklahoma, Georgia, Texas, Kansas, and Arizona who are interested in introducing similar bills in their own states:

This is quite a change from Porter's recent activism wtih Cindy Jacobs praying that God will give Christians control over the media and every level of government:

Rep. Steve King Hates Illegal Immigrants, Loves Steve King

Rep. Steve King has staked out turf on the far right of the House Republican caucus. But he’s got more competition there, which may explain the relatively paltry audience that came to hear him in a cavernous CPAC ballroom.

King chastised his GOP colleagues, saying that if they had pulled out all the stops they could have killed “Obamacare” in the last Congress in spite of Nancy Pelosi’s “iron fist.” King called the 87 Republican freshman “God’s gift to America.”
 
But his speech was mostly a loving message about King himself, with him bragging about his work as a state legislator and congressman, and noting with emotion-laden pride that his granddaughter was named “Reagan” and had no chance of growing up to be a Democrat.
 
He took credit for stopping immigration reform (“amnesty”) in the last Congress and said that if anyone brings it up in the new Congress they should have a scarlet letter A pinned to them. King, who has infamously compared illegal immigrants to cattle, said today that most of them are criminals. He called for a wall within two fences to be built along the entire border with Mexico.
 
King bragged that he was the first to ask for legislation to repeal health care reform and demanded that his GOP colleagues insert language into the continuing resolution to prevent the federal government from spending any money to start implementing reform. Otherwise, he said President Obama will send the roots of that “malignant tumor” as deep as he can.
 
King’s speech touted the seemingly mandatory evocation of “American exceptionalism,” though he had one small critique of the Bill of Rights. The right to keep and bear arms, he said, should have been the First Amendment.

Rep. Steve King Hates Illegal Immigrants, Loves Steve King

Rep. Steve King has staked out turf on the far right of the House Republican caucus. But he’s got more competition there, which may explain the relatively paltry audience that came to hear him in a cavernous CPAC ballroom.

King chastised his GOP colleagues, saying that if they had pulled out all the stops they could have killed “Obamacare” in the last Congress in spite of Nancy Pelosi’s “iron fist.” King called the 87 Republican freshman “God’s gift to America.”
 
But his speech was mostly a loving message about King himself, with him bragging about his work as a state legislator and congressman, and noting with emotion-laden pride that his granddaughter was named “Reagan” and had no chance of growing up to be a Democrat.
 
He took credit for stopping immigration reform (“amnesty”) in the last Congress and said that if anyone brings it up in the new Congress they should have a scarlet letter A pinned to them. King, who has infamously compared illegal immigrants to cattle, said today that most of them are criminals. He called for a wall within two fences to be built along the entire border with Mexico.
 
King bragged that he was the first to ask for legislation to repeal health care reform and demanded that his GOP colleagues insert language into the continuing resolution to prevent the federal government from spending any money to start implementing reform. Otherwise, he said President Obama will send the roots of that “malignant tumor” as deep as he can.
 
King’s speech touted the seemingly mandatory evocation of “American exceptionalism,” though he had one small critique of the Bill of Rights. The right to keep and bear arms, he said, should have been the First Amendment.
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Legislation Posts Archive

Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 07/06/2011, 11:27am
Given that Rep. Michele Bachmann is now running for president and among the Republican frontrunners, I was going through our Bachmann archives collecting past posts chronicling the absolute fringe Religious Right leaders with whom Bachmann has eagerly associated herself since getting elected to Congress. In doing so, I noticed that we had lost our video of Bachmann and Lou Engle at the Family Research Council's 2009 "Prayercast" which was organized in order to seek God's intervention in preventing the passage of health care reform. And so I thought it might be a good idea to get... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 07/05/2011, 10:28am
On today's installment of "Faith and Freedom Radio," Mat Staver and Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel/Liberty University discussed the passage of marriage equality legislation in New York, which they used as an opportunity to attack Kevin Jennings and claim that groups like GLSEN and PFLAG encourage five year-old children to have sex with one another and even support pederasty and child sexual abuse.  Barber eventually warned that "when we shake our fist against God and rebel against him," as the legislature did in New York, it was only a matter of time before we... MORE
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 06/29/2011, 9:39am
The Ohio State House finally voted on and passed Janet Porter’s “Heartbeat bill,” which would criminalize abortion in most cases. Conspicuously absent was a statement from the state’s leading anti-choice group, the Ohio Right to Life Society, which actually opposed the bill because it is blatantly unconstitutional. Now Porter’s prized legislation moves on to the Senate, and her group Faith2Action released a congratulatory statement: “For every battle weary pro-lifer who didn't see how children were going to be protected in our lifetime, come see what God... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 06/27/2011, 3:53pm
Bryan Fischer spent the entire first hour of his radio program today discussing the passage of marriage equality legislation in New York last week in typical Fischer-fashion ... which means me focused on warning about the health risks of gay sex while railing against the "hate crimes" gay activists are committing against Christians. And, for good measure, he also explained that there was no need to "marriage equality" legislation because gays already have the equality to marry ... anyone of the opposite sex: Allow me to just point out, once again, that this is literally... MORE
Brian Tashman, Thursday 06/23/2011, 3:09pm
A candidate running against Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison says that Ellison, who is one of two Muslim House members, is a “radical Islamist” who doesn’t uphold the Constitution. Lynne Torgerson unsuccessfully challenged Ellison as an Independent in 2010, but her floundering campaign received immense support from the Tea Party Nation and its vehemently anti-Muslim president Judson Phillips. That year, Torgerson said that Ellison “has no business being in our federal government” and that Muslims are subverting the Constitution. In a post on Tea Party Nation that was... MORE
Brian Tashman, Thursday 06/23/2011, 1:10pm
When Texas governor and potential presidential candidate Rick Perry announced that he was holding a prayer rally called The Response, co-hosted by the American Family Association, Right Wing Watch flagged the immense influence of another group, the International House of Prayer (IHOP), in organizing the event. Members of the IHOP leadership hold high-ranking positions in The Response’s leadership team, including Director of The Response Luis Cataldo, National Student Mobilization coordinator Dave Sliker, and program coordinators Jill Cataldo and Randy and Kelsey Bohlender. Mike Bickle,... MORE
Brian Tashman, Thursday 06/23/2011, 10:14am
Pastor Joseph Mattera is one of the most outspoken opponents of marriage equality legislation in New York, and has condemned gays and lesbians for, among other things, their supposed ties to Nazism and lack of concern for the poor. Reacting to dueling rallies in Albany between the bill’s supporters and detractors, Mattera blasted religious leaders who support marriage equality and cast doubt on their religiosity. He even criticized one “supposed rabbi” for wearing “a rainbow Yakama [sic].” In anticipation of the state Senate's vote, various groups held rallies... MORE