An interesting report from the Catholic News Agency tells us that the new Speaker of the House of Representatives in the U.S., Republican John Boehner, in introducing new legislation to the House, described it is ‘one of our highest legislative priorities’. The legislation to which he referred would permanently prohibit U.S. taxpayer funding of abortion across all federal programs there. Speaker Boehner, together with other Representatives such as Chris Smith, Dan Lipinski and Joe Pitts, held a press conference some days ago to discuss the introduction of their proposed legislation, entitled H.R. 3 – the ‘No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act’. He is quoted as saying that the new Republican majority ‘is keeping its commitment to taxpayers by “ensuring their tax dollars are never used to fund abortions.”’ He has also said that a ban on the funding of abortion ‘is the will of the people and ought to be the law of the land.’
The new Bill, we are told, is designed ‘to permanently end any U.S. government financial support for abortion whether it be direct funding or by tax credits or any other subsidy.’
Rep. Smith, according to the report, ‘noted that the new bill also protects conscience rights of individuals and institutions by giving courts the authority to “prevent and redress actual or threatened violations of conscience.”’
The report continues: ‘The U.S. bishops have urged the passage of legislation to amend the 2010 health care legislation called the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to prevent it explicitly from either providing abortion directly, or funding health care plans and community health centers that do so.’ A welcome decision!