August 5, 2018

With a new Supreme Court nominee on the docket, one of the biggest questions from both the right and the left is, “Will Brett Kavanaugh overturn Roe v. Wade?” Liberals have used this question to strike fear among their base while Conservatives have used it to conjure up hope to protect the unborn. However, Republicans have opportunities to scale back this law while waiting on a full repeal.

One of the biggest ways to make a dent in abortion services is to strip funding from Planned Parenthood and other abortion clinics. These clinics receive an obscene amount of federal money annually. Even though the Hyde Amendment bans taxpayer money from directly paying for abortions, the money they receive keeps them operating on a daily basis and referring for abortions. Not only is the Hyde Amendment language essential in federal legislation, but a defunding of these clinics is long overdue. Most Republican Congressmen ran on this issue, but we have yet to see any progress.

Other legislation has been successful in the House but not the Senate recently. The Born Alive Survivors Protection Act (H.R. 4712/S.220) passed the House in January. This bill would simply require medical professionals to exercise necessary medical intervention for children who are born alive after a failed abortion attempt. You would think this would be an easy bill to pass, even for most Democrats. However, it has not moved to the floor of the Senate and there has been no indication of its becoming a priority.

Another bill that has already passed in the House is the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 36/S. 2311). This bill protects unborn children from abortion after 20 weeks of gestation. Science has shown that an unborn baby can feel pain at this stage. During the January government shutdown over the budget, Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC) worked out a deal to place this bill on the floor for a vote. It did not have enough votes to even pass cloture. However, we now know where each Senator stands on this issue.

Perhaps one of the most current and timely ways we can reverse the effects of Roe v. Wade is to stop the spread of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). Phyllis Schlafly successfully created a counter movement to the false narratives spouted by feminists in the 1970s. She proved that the ERA is extremely dangerous for everyone. Not only would it create a sex-neutral society, but it would make abortion a Constitutional right. This would completely eliminate the Hyde Amendment, allowing our taxpayer money to pay for any abortion. This year, Illinois became the 37th state to ratify the ERA. Only 38 states are needed to pass it, however five states have already rescinded their vote. With a cultural push of “equality”, education on this issue is needed now more than ever.  Also, efforts should be made to rescind or block this measure in every state.

If the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court does eventually results in the repeal of Roe v. Wade, there is still more work to be done. Most states have laws making abortion legal to their residents, but each will differ in their restrictions. The fight to protect life will be focused on the state level.

Since the House is currently on their summer recess, and the Senate will take a short recess soon, many of your Representatives will be holding townhalls. This would be the perfect opportunity to ask them about their plans for these bills and challenge them to continue to defend life. Eagle Forum has always been dedicated to protecting the life of the unborn. We will continue to update you on these measures, as well as more opportunities to make a difference.