I thought the bolded phrase was a little ironic...Oh yeah..it's the NYT! So much for objectivity in the mainstream media.
April 27, 2005
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Filed at 9:31 p.m. ET
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The House passed a bill Wednesday that would make it illegal to dodge parental-consent laws by taking minors across state lines for abortions, the latest effort to chip away at abortion rights
after Republican gains in the November elections.
By 270-157, the House sent the bill to the Senate, where the policy has new momentum as an item on the Republicans' top 10 list of legislative priorities.
Reflecting rising public support for requiring parents' involvement in their pregnant daughters' decisions, the bill would impose fines, jail time or both on adults and doctors involved in most cases where minors were taken out of state to get abortions.
In a statement, President Bush praised the House for passing the measure. ''The parents of pregnant minors can provide counsel, guidance and support to their children and should be involved in these decisions,'' Bush said. ''I urge the Senate to pass this important legislation and help continue to build a culture of life in America.''
This was the third time since 1998 the House has approved such a measure sponsored by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla. The Senate has never taken it up and no vote has been set, but Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., expects to bring up a similar measure this summer, according to spokeswoman Amy Call.
In another sign of the measure's new support, Democratic Rep. William Clay of Missouri, who staunchly favors abortion rights and voted against the measure in the past, voted for it on Wednesday. Clay said he switched in response to an outpouring of support for the bill from constituents in his St. Louis district.
''This bill simply says that a parent has a right to know if their child is having surgery,'' Clay said.
Voting for it were 216 Republicans and 54 Democrats. Voting against it were 145 Democrats, 11 Republicans and 1 Independent.
If passed by the Senate and signed by the president, the policy would represent the fifth measure since Bush took office in 2001 aimed at reducing the number of abortions.
Senate abortion opponents prevailed last month in preventing Democrats from restricting the rights of abortion clinic protesters in bankruptcy court.
Tempers flared in the House even before the emotional floor debate.
Democrats complained that their efforts to soften the bill, for example, by exempting from prosecution adult siblings and grandparents who help pregnant minors, were described in the GOP-authored committee report as efforts to protect ''sexual predators.''
Judiciary Committee Chairman James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., who authored the panel's report, defended its language, saying the Democratic amendments would not have specifically excluded child molesters from protections.
''Perhaps these amendments were not properly drafted by the authors when they were submitted in the committee,'' Sensenbrenner told the House. ''That's not the fault of the majority, that's the fault of the people who drafted the amendment.''
Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., called the report by Sensenbrenner's committee ''a rape of the rules of this House.''
''Would it be fair for an official report of this committee to call this entire bill the 'Rapists and Sexual Predators Right to Sue Act?''' Nadler asked rhetorically.
Last year, Congress made it a separate crime to harm a fetus during an assault on a pregnant woman. It also decided to deny federal funds to state and local agencies that act against health care providers and insurers because they don't provide or pay for abortions.
In 2003 it outlawed what critics call partial birth abortions, generally carried out in the second or third trimester, in which a fetus is partially delivered before being aborted. A year earlier, lawmakers amended the legal definitions for person, human being, child and individual to include any fetus that survives an abortion procedure.
The bill defines a minor as anyone ''not older than'' 18. More than 30 states have parental notification or consent laws.
The measure provides certain exceptions to a mandatory waiting period and punishments, such as when the abortion would save the life of the mother. Also excepted are any physician presented with documentation showing that a court in the minor's home state waived any parental notification requirements. In addition the bill makes an exception for minors who have signed a written statement saying that she is a victim of sexual abuse by a parent and can back it up with documentation of having reported that abuse to a state authority.
The House rejected two Democratic amendments that would have added immunity from prosecution and civil suits confidants of the minor who help transport her -- such as grandparents and clergy -- and others involved in the violation, such as taxicab and bus drivers.
Opponents say any gains the bill might make would be dwarfed by health, abuse and legal problems that pregnant girls and their well-meaning confidants might suffer.
Bebe J. Anderson, a lawyer at the Center for Reproductive Rights, said it would produce ''a confusing maze of requirements ... designed to isolate some teens and leave others with no safe options.''
''No matter how few people it affects, it's an important bill on the principles,'' said Frist, a Tennessee Republican who is looking at seeking his party's presidential nomination in 2008.
The bill is H.R. 748
Apr 28, '05
Just playing the Devil's Advocate here. . .
What is dubious is that it appears that this bill is aimed just at abortion. Why not word the bill in such a way that "would make it illegal to dodge parental-consent laws by taking minors across state lines for" ALL PROCEDURES which may include abortion?? Why just word the bill to include only abortion?? To me, if there was sincere concern regarding parental consent, the wording of the such a bill would be more inclusive, not just focused on one procedure.
Any takes on these questions??
Last edit by Ted on Apr 28, '05
Apr 28, '05
Just playing "Devil's Advocate" here, Steph. . .
I'm not aware of schools
bussing children across state lines for abortions. Honestly, that is news to me. If such a practice takes place deliberately without parent's consent then I can understand a parent's anger if/when they should find out. . . just on the grounds that they were not consulted.
But I have to admit that for a number of reasons I hold mixed opinions about this proposed law. Not all parents are reasonable. If a seventeen year old wanted an abortion and she had parents with a less than reasonable belief system, I would hate to see her unsupported. Also, when I threw out my questions, I questioned the sincerety of the intent of the law quite frankly because it is largely a Republican bill. I have NO respect for this party. None. I question EVERY decision made by them now just because their ideology is so freakin wacked. In my eyes, there hasn't been a reasonable policy made by them in a LONG time. So I question them; I question their thinking process, I question their motives. . . for every decision. They completely lost my trust.
So now they care about parental rights. Well, they should put some meat to their "caring". Write a bill that is more inclusive. Why not have it worded as I proposed??
Steph. . . it's going to take a LOOOOONG time for me to even begin to think about trusting the Republican Party again. Their ideology is so extreme it's dangerous. So I question this bill. And EVERY bill they bring forth SHOULD be questioned because they earned such a distrustful reputation in my books. I certainly do NOT trust the Republican Party to make laws regarding family matters. Their sense of God and religion, family, freedom to make decisions, caring, and . . . heck. . . even patriotism scare me. Steph, a significant part of the reason why we are so polarized as a country is because of the policies and decisions made by this political party. . .
Last edit by Ted on Apr 28, '05
Apr 28, '05
Steph. . . I've since edited my previous post. I should probably write my posts using the Microsoft Word program FIRST before sending them out. I have a horrible habit of editing, re-editing and re-editing my posts before I'm finally finished with them.
But you're probably right. . . I guess I am "polarized" when it comes to the political ideologies currently in power.
And you just described Marla when you said if a girl had parents with less than a reasonable belief system . .actually you described me. My children know their Dad and I are pro-life. They also know we would not beat the living daylights out of them if a pregnancy happened. You cannot equate pro-life with child abuse. We aren't monsters my dear - really. We love our kids and are pro-life. Amazing, huh?
Steph. . .
Believe it or not, I do not think that people who are Pro-Life are "unreasonable". In many ways, I'm pro-life myself. Without getting into my entire belief system I share to you that I deeply value life. My posting history on this bulletin board gives evidence to this. I also appreciate and respect the woman's right to choose. But what might be confusing for some is that I do not see a problem in appreciating and respecting both issues. In fact, in my mind, an argument can be made that they are two seperate issues entirely. For many reasons, though, the buttom line for me is that government need not and should not intervene with the abortion issue. One reason why the government should keep out of these issues (the government, at present, should keep out of the whole "family" issue) is because it's current thinking process is too freakin' black and white; too "us and them"; too "our way or no way".
Oh well. . . I'm rambling. . .
Love you too, Steph. . . Please know that I most certainly do NOT think you as unreasonable.
Last edit by Ted on Apr 28, '05