12 October 2011

Urgent action needed: Support the "Protect Life Act"

From the USCCB:

The health care reform bill, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), was signed into law in 2010. On January 20, 2011, Reps. Joseph Pitts (R-PA) and Dan Lipinski (D-IL) introduced the Protect Life Act (H.R. 358) to bring PPACA into line with policies on abortion and conscience rights existing in other federal health programs. Later, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) introduced the companion bill in the Senate (S. 877).

In the House, Committee consideration of H.R. 358 is completed. House floor action is scheduled for the week of October 11. Please urge your Representative to support H.R. 358 on the floor and to oppose any hostile weakening amendments.

In a letter to the House of Representatives, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Chairman of the bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, urged Members to support the Protect Life Act, which will do the following:
  • Ensure that all PPACA funds are covered by the policy of the longstanding Hyde Amendment (no funds for abortion except in cases of life endangerment or rape/incest).
  • Prevent federal funds from subsidizing health plans that cover abortions beyond the Hyde exceptions, so that PPACA will follow the policy of other federal health insurance programs.
  • Uphold rights of conscience related to abortion, ensuring that governmental entities receiving federal funds under PPACA will not discriminate against health care providers who decline involvement in abortion.
  • Close a loophole in PPACA’s non-preemption clause, so that state laws restricting abortion or protecting conscience rights will not be preempted, and states will not be able to override PPACA’s provisions ensuring that health plans without elective abortion are available in each state. See: http://old.usccb.org/healthcare/cardinal-dinardo-HR358-ltr.....
ACTION: Contact your Representative by phone, e-mail, or FAX letter:
  • Send an e-mail through the CapWiz Action Center or print a pdf here.
  • Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at: 202-224-3121 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 202-224-3121 end_of_the_skype_highlighting, or call your Representative’s local office.
  • Additional contact info can be found on Representatives’ web sites at: www.house.gov.
MESSAGE FOR HOUSE: “During floor consideration, please vote for the Protect Life Act, H.R. 358, and oppose any hostile weakening amendments. This bill will amend the health care reform law to preserve longstanding federal policies on abortion and conscience rights.”

WHEN: It is anticipated that the House will take up H.R. 358 during the week of October 11. Please act today! Thanks!
Updated 10/6/11

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