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U.S. House Republicans Bring Pro-Life Hearing to Capitol Hill

House Democrats, led by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif, have made their pro-infanticide stance clear: For the past seven months they have blocked all attempts to have a vote on the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (H.R. 962) leading to House Minority Whip Steve Scalise’s procedural tactic known as a discharge petition.

The petition has been signed by more than 200 members of Congress but needs at least 218 signatures to bring H.R. 962 to a floor vote. The bill would require hospital care to babies born after failed abortions and levy fines or even a prison term for abortion doctors who intentionally kill the infant abortion survivor.

In response to Democrat obstruction, House Republicans invited pro-life medical experts and others to Capitol Hill on Tuesday for a hearing to examine the abortion survivors legislation. The hearing was held in the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center because Speaker Pelosi denied House Republicans a committee hearing room.

Jill Stanek, a pro-life activist with Susan B. Anthony List, explained that babies born alive can survive for an hour or more, enough time to get them medical care to save them. Stanek then added, “How far will doctors go to comfort themselves for letting abortion survivors die? Pretty far. Clearly, little abortion survivors desperately need Congress to pass the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act to provide them with legal medical protections and not leave open the decision whether they live or die.”

Since every Republican House member has already signed it, the remaining signatures have to be from Democrats. See if your member of Congress has signed the petition, and if not, encourage him or her to do so today.

“I live for the day when abortion is not just illegal but it is unthinkable, and what is happening to these babies that are born because they are unwanted is unconscionable,” said Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo., one of the hosts of the hearing.

News Sources

Examining the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (Full Hearing)
YouTube, Steve Scalise

GOP Lawmakers Draw Attention to ‘Born Alive’ Bill With Own Hearing
Daily Signal

Infanticide is real and must be stopped, doctors tell Congress in born-alive hearing

Speaker Pelosi’s Hearing Problem
Family Research Council

Born Alive Act Tracker
Steve Scalise

Discharge Petition Concerning H.Res. 102

Where Does Your Representative in Congress Stand on Infanticide?
Family Policy Alliance

Tell House to vote on Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act
Life Petitions

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Planned Parenthood Ropes in Popular Artists to Promote New Campaign

Planned Parenthood is enlisting nearly 140 popular artists, including Ariana Grande, Beck, Foo Fighters, Heart, Idina Menzel, John Legend, Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus, Norah Jones, and Sarah McLachlan, to promote its latest effort to normalize abortion.

The new campaign is called “#BansOffMyBody,” and it is intended to garner opposition to state legislative efforts to limit abortion and promote the abortion giant’s blatant lie that “the Trump administration forced Planned Parenthood and other providers out of the Title X program through the unethical gag rule.” In reality, Planned Parenthood consciously chose not to follow the federal rules, and that is what resulted in the loss of funds.

This new effort is a way to protect what they deem to be the “fundamental right to control our bodies” through abortion. While Planned Parenthood clamors that “everyone deserves health care that’s free of shame, stigma, or judgment,” and seeks to do that by equating abortion with “health care,” shame, stigma, and judgment are the natural by-products of a conscience pricked by the killing of one’s unborn child. Release from those things will not come from a human law, but from God’s forgiveness for breaking His law.

News Sources

LIZZO, Billie Eilish, Ariana Grande, Lady Gaga, Halsey, John Legend, Nicki Minaj, Demi Lovato, Dua Lipa, G-Eazy, HAIM, Sara Bareilles, Troye Sivan, Macklemore, Megan Thee Stallion, Miley Cyrus, Kacey Musgraves, Carole King, Hayley Kiyoko, Bon Iver, Beck, Selena Gomez, and More Speak Out Against Abortion Restrictions
Planned Parenthood

Band Together Bands Off
I Stand With Planned Parenthood

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David Daleiden Hearing Over Undercover Fetal Tissue Trafficking Videos Begins This Week

David Daleiden, the investigative journalist for the Center for Medical Progress, and his cohort, Sandra Merritt, who together created a series of undercover videos exposing Planned Parenthood’s fetal tissue trafficking, have been the subject of a nine-day preliminary hearing in San Francisco that started this week. The purpose of the hearing is to determine whether there’s enough evidence to try them on 15 felony counts for invasion of privacy.

The argument against Daleiden and Merritt is that they videotaped Planned Parenthood-affiliated abortion providers without their knowledge concerning fetal tissue procurement at the National Abortion Federation’s annual conferences in 2014 and 2015. The prosecution contends that conference attendees were required to sign confidentiality agreements prohibiting them from divulging details about the conference to anyone not in attendance.

However, the defense claims that the NAF’s exhibitor rules and regulations did not prohibit video recordings. Further, Daleiden’s attorney, Peter Breen, said that California’s Invasion of Privacy Act excludes any conversation that can be reasonably overheard or recorded, and therefore “none of the content was confidential.” Breen added that Daleiden’s journalistic efforts should be protected by California’s shield laws.

Tuesday marked the first time that any of Daleiden’s undercover videos have been played in an open court.

News Sources

Criminal Hearing Begins Over Undercover Video by Abortion Foes
Courthouse News

Preliminary hearing against Center for Medical Progress has begun
Live Action

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FACT Signs onto Amicus Brief Upholding Biological Definition of Sex

An amicus brief was filed last week with the United States Supreme Court on behalf of family policy councils around the country, including FACT in a case that will decide whether the word “sex” as used in Title VII’s prohibition of discrimination in the workplace includes “gender identity.”

The case, Harris Funeral Homes Inc. v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, involves a male funeral home worker who now identifies as a woman and wanted to dress as a woman while at work. The funeral home declined this request and fired the employee based on its sex-specific dress code and in accord with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission standards. Nevertheless, the EEOC sued the funeral home for sexual discrimination.

The amicus brief, which supports the position of the funeral home, states that interpreting “sex” to include “gender expression” or “gender identity” in Title VII would make any laws concerning “sex” discrimination meaningless and impossible to apply. This would ultimately affect the interpretation of corresponding terms in Title IX, which prohibits “sex” discrimination in education. That, of course, would affect the rights of parentals in regard to their child’s education, women’s sports, bathroom and locker room facilities, medical care, and the like.

As it says in the amicus brief, “The case here involves no children. But it asks the Court to declare, for the first time, that sex and gender–and terms like ‘girls’ and ‘boys’–lack any ‘fixed external referent’. . . Sex would be unmoored from testable ideas of biology and law. . . In one fell swoop, ‘mother,’ ‘father,’ ‘son,’ and ‘daughter’ would lose their legal meanings.”

News Sources:

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The Party of Lincoln (in TN) Acted Like It on Saturday

We are in a period of American history eerily similar to the one faced by President Abraham Lincoln when he was first elected. Lincoln said what needed to be said about the U.S. Supreme Court, and this past Saturday, the executive committee of the Tennessee Republican Party made a statement on abortion that would have made Lincoln proud. I really think you need to understand what is going on.

Lincoln’s election in 1860 came at a historic time. In his inaugural address on March 4, 1861, he made a clear statement about how the people, from whom the federal judiciary receives its powers, should view decisions of the United States Supreme Court.

But to appreciate Lincoln’s statement, you have to understand the United States Supreme Court to which he referred, Dred Scott v. Sanford.

The Issue the Court Had to Decide

While many have heard of the Dred Scott decision and many understand it to have been “bad,” few understand what the issue was that made the decision so bad.

Dred Scott, a resident of Missouri, sued John Sanford, a resident of New York in federal court “under that provision of the Constitution which gives jurisdiction in controversies between citizens of different States.” The suit was filed by Mr. Scott “to assert the title of himself and his family to freedom.”

Mr. Sanford defended by arguing that Mr. Scott did not have the “right to sue in a court of the United States” because he was “a negro of African descent, whose ancestors were of pure African blood, and who were brought into this country and sold as slaves.”

Though Mr. Scott had been born in the United States and would thus seem to be a citizen, Mr. Sanford claimed Mr. Scott could not be a “citizen, in the sense in which that word is used in the Constitution of the United States” and thus had none of “the rights, and privileges, and immunities, guaranteed by that instrument to the citizen[,] [o]ne of which rights is the privilege of suing in a court of the United States in the cases specified in the Constitution.”

Resolving the Issue by Dehumanizing Scott

The Court framed the issue this way,

The words ‘people of the United States’ and ‘citizens’ are synonymous terms, and mean the same thing. . . . The question before us is, whether the class of persons described in the [complaint] . . . compose a portion of this people, and are constituent members of this sovereignty? We think they are not, and that they are not included, and were not intended to be included, under the word ‘citizens’ in the Constitution. (emphasis added)

How could the Court say that the people who ratified the U.S. Constitution intended to exclude those persons born in the United States from being citizens with rights under the U.S. Constitution?

This was the Supreme Court’s answer with respect to the descendants of slaves:

They were at that time [the adoption of the Constitution] considered as a subordinate and inferior class of beings, who had been subjugated by the dominant race, . . . and had no rights or privileges but such as those who held the power and the Government might choose to grant them. (emphasis supplied)

Please let this understanding of persons and the basis upon which some persons have rights and others do not sink in; the “dominant” party in power may someday consider you part of a “subordinate and inferior class of beings.”

President Lincoln’s Statement Regarding the Supreme Court’s Power to Dehumanize Persons

It was in this context that President Lincoln said the following:

I do not forget the position assumed by some that constitutional questions are to be decided by the Supreme Court, nor do I deny that such decisions must be binding in any case upon the parties to a suit as to the object of that suit, while they are also entitled to very high respect and consideration in all parallel cases by all other departments of the Government. And while it is obviously possible that such decision may be erroneous in any given case, still the evil effect following it, being limited to that particular case, with the chance that it may be overruled and never become a precedent for other cases, can better be borne than could the evils of a different practice. At the same time, the candid citizen must confess that if the policy of the Government upon vital questions affecting the whole people is to be irrevocably fixed by decisions of the Supreme Court, the instant they are made in ordinary litigation between parties in personal actions the people will have ceased to be their own rulers, having to that extent practically resigned their Government into the hands of that eminent tribunal. (emphasis supplied)

Deciphering Lincoln’s Statement for Non-Lawyers

In his statement, Lincoln denies what we, ignorant of the history of our own form of government, have accepted as true.

First, he denies that a “decision” by a court resolving a particular dispute between particular parties is law in the sense that the Constitution itself is law and, for that reason, a court decision (opinion) is not “policy.” Most lawyers today mistakenly think of judicial opinions as law and making policy, and then want us to join in their mistaken opinion.

Second, he denies that a judgment between particular parties to a particular controversy is “binding” on those who were not parties to the case decided.

Moreover, when the legal issue is different from the one resolved in a particular controversy, even if on the same topic and involving perhaps the same parties, it is not conclusive or binding on the parties as to the new and different controversy.

For example, just because legislation deals with abortion, if the precise legal question is not the same as those previously decided by the Supreme Court—as is the case with the state Senate’s Ninth Amendment version of House bill 77 on abortion—then Roe v. Wade should certainly be “considered,” but it is not binding precedent.

Today, however, we are told by lawyers such as those who oppose a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade that we must treat judgments against other states as if they were a judgment against Tennessee, and we are told that words in an opinion about the Constitution on the subject of abortion are, as a practical matter, the same as the words in the Constitution.

What Should Lincoln’s Statement Teach TN’s Governor and Legislators?

What Lincoln is saying is that while Tennessee’s state elected officials should give “very high respect and consideration” to an opinion of the U.S. Supreme Court, there is nothing in an opinion or a judgment, even against Tennessee, that would prohibit the legislature from enacting the same law over and over again until, like the judge in Luke’s story of the persistent widow asking for justice, the U.S. Supreme Court relents and reverses its earlier opinion as to what it thinks the U.S. Constitution means.

This is what we once knew as a system of checks and balances, used to prevent the U.S. Supreme Court from becoming “rulers” over the people.

Can Losing a Direct Challenge to Roe Be a Pro-Life Setback?

What I just said (and Lincoln said before me!) is why I vehemently disagree with the pro-life lawyers who have argued that enacting a ban on abortion, if not upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court, will “set the pro-life movement back.”

Balderdash! If the Court is not inclined to reverse Roe with a direct challenge to its presuppositions, it sure won’t reverse Roe if those presuppositions aren’t challenged.

Moreover, if you don’t want to risk Roe being affirmed, then these pro-life lawyers shouldn’t recommend the passage of any legislation! Why? Because those laws, too, could result in Roe being affirmed, as has been the case for 46 years!

That legislators would buy this kind of circular reasoning demonstrates an utter lack of independent critical thinking skills. They let these pro-life lawyers convince them not to enact a particular bill based on a legal argument they didn’t think of because it could be a setback if Roe is affirmed while failing to acknowledge that the very bills they propose could have the same effect.

On What Basis Could Losing a Challenge to Roe Be a Setback?

Losing a case in the U.S. Supreme Court is only a setback if the people and their representatives allow it to be a setback. We usually allow that setback in one of two ways.

First, we wrongly assume that the “decisions of the Supreme Court” irrevocably fix “the policy of the Government upon vital questions affecting the whole people.” So, we tiptoe around the edges of the fundamental question the Court got wrong, hoping they choose to see the light. The Court has been allowed to walk in darkness for 46 years now because we won’t shine the light of real law on their darkness.

Second, we refuse to spend the resources necessary to continue the fight.

In Which Camp Are Tennessee’s Senators?

I presume that some of Tennessee’s senators are in the latter camp, because the “setback” argument is so demonstrably specious and would lead to doing nothing of any significance, ever. So, I presume they will resort to their other favorite argument—a concern with “wasting money” in a potentially losing effort.

In my view, spending money in defense of our God-given rights and their abrogation by means of judicial tyranny is not a waste, particularly when the state is presenting a new constitutional argument to the Court.

If those in this latter group buy the judicial nose-counting view of the federal judiciary’s power being urged upon them—that is, the U.S. Supreme Court is in complete control of Tennessee’s “public policy affecting the whole of our people” so long as they only have a governor and 132 legislators and there are five of them—then, in the words of Lincoln, they will have “practically resigned [our] Government into the hands of that eminent tribunal.”

If that happens, then we, the people, will deserve the judicial tyranny we have allowed these legislators to visit upon us by electing and reelecting them.

How to Evaluate Your Legislator

This is not fun for me to say, because I have friends, good friends, in this latter camp. Some I served with. But I believe those who remain in this latter camp when it’s time to vote will have demonstrated to voters that they don’t really understand our form of government; the powers delegated to the respective branches of government and to the federal and state sovereigns, respectively; our system of checks and balances and how to use them; and, perhaps most fundamentally, that a price must continually be paid by the people in order for them to govern themselves. Those are not inconsequential matters.

Tennessee Republican Party Gets It Right; Will Its Elected Members?

The foregoing now should explain why I think the state’s Republican Party got it right by adopting, by acclamation, a resolution last Saturday urging the governor and all Republican members of the General Assembly to “pursue Pro-life legislation in 2020 that protects the fundamental right to life beginning at conception.”

Pro-life resolution from the TN Republican Party, August 2019

The leaders of the state’s Republican Party know that when an unborn child, clearly a living human being, is treated by the U.S. Supreme Court as a “subordinate and inferior being” who only has “rights or privileges but such as those who [hold] the power and the Government might choose to grant them,” then the members of their party have failed to learn from the history of Scott v. Sanford and from their own party’s history. They are not “the Party of Lincoln” anymore.

Let’s pray we have a governor like Lincoln and that our Republican legislators don’t doom us to continue the current deadly repetition of history foisted upon us by Roe v. Wade and its dehumanization of the unborn to prevent their recognition as “persons” under our Constitution.

David Fowler served in the Tennessee state Senate for 12 years before joining FACT as President in 2006. Read David’s complete bio.

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