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North Dakota Supreme Court Rejects Abortion Advocates’ Challenge to AUL-based law that Protects Women from Misuse of Life-ending Drugs

By Americans United for Life
Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

“The abortion lobby puts profits over people, but today’s decision validated the hard work of North Dakota legislators who cared enough about women to fight for them,” said AUL’s Dr. Charmaine Yoest.

bette-grande
Sponsor of the bill, AUL ally State Representative Bette Grande

WASHINGTON, D.C. (10-28-14) – North Dakota women will be better protected from dangerous, life-ending drugs as the result of a decision by the North Dakota Supreme Court today. The state’s high court reversed a North Dakota trial judge and set aside his injunction of a law that regulates chemical abortion drugs, based on Americans United for Life model legislation. The law requires that the drugs used to end pre-born life be administered only in the way approved by the FDA.

“We know that women have died when given life-ending, chemical abortion drugs,” said AUL President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest. “Big Abortion is determined to increase profits and take advantage of women by selling the dangerous drugs in ways that have been linked to at least eight deaths. But one by one, courts are telling Big Abortion ‘no.’”

The case, MKB Management v. Burdick, stems from a challenge to HB 1297, enacted in 2011 and sponsored by AUL ally Representative Bette Grande. A North Dakota trial court invalidated the law, and the State appealed to the North Dakota Supreme Court, which, under applicable state laws, will declare a state law unconstitutional only if four Justices agree. Today, the North Dakota Supreme Court ruled that there was not a sufficient majority to invalidate the law, meaning that trial court’s decision permanently enjoining the law is reversed.

AUL filed an amicus curiae “friend-of-the-court” brief on behalf of 49 North Dakota Legislators, including bill sponsor Representative Grande. The brief argued that the State Legislature had a substantial interest in regulating abortion to protect women’s health, and that the U.S. Supreme Court’s precedents supported the law.

Similar laws have already been upheld in Texas and Ohio, and last week a state trial court in Oklahoma refused to enjoin a 2014 abortion-inducing drug regulation while it evaluates abortion advocates’ challenge to that law. An Arizona law, preliminarily enjoined by the Ninth Circuit, is currently pending on a cert petition in the U.S. Supreme Court.

For more on the health-risks of abortion to women and their unborn children, click here.

AUL Calls on HHS to Exempt All Those with Moral Objections to Anti-Life Policies in Obamacare

By Americans United for Life
Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services “failure to sincerely address the abuses of its anti-American, anti-life, coercive mandate is reprehensible,” said AUL’s Dr. Charmaine Yoest.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (10-21-14) – To hold the Obama Administration accountable for its anti-life policies in Obamacare regulations, Americans United for Life filed an official comment with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and called on AUL’s nationwide grassroots network to also comment on anti-life policies that trample on American’s First Amendment Conscience Rights. “HHS cannot claim ignorance regarding these serious concerns and anti-life policies,” said AUL President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest. “Numerous times pro-life advocates, including AUL, have urged HHS and the Institute of Medicine to respect life and First Amendment conscience rights in developing the guidelines. Instead, abortion and anti-life policies pervade the mandate.”

In its official comment filed today (available here), AUL called HHS to exempt all religious and moral objectors from its coercive Obamacare mandate in accordance with state and federal laws and the U.S. Supreme Court’s clear directive in the Hobby Lobby decision. The AUL comment also extensively documents that including life-ending drugs and devices, deceptively labeled as “contraception,” goes against the stated intent of the preventive services provision of the Affordable Care Act. Rather than focusing on women’s health, an ideologically driven recommendation from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) intertwined anti-life polices in Obamacare, under the influences of the pro-abortion advocates who made up the committee. The AUL comment demands that HHS remove life-ending drugs and devices, such as the abortion inducing drug ella, from the mandate.

“HHS’ failure to sincerely address the abuses of its anti-American, anti-life, coercive mandate is reprehensible,” said Dr. Yoest.

“All Americans with religious or moral objections must be exempted from the mandate and drugs and devices with known life-ending mechanisms of action must be removed from the list of required coverage.”

Since 2010, Americans United for Life and the pro-life majority it represents nationwide have submitted thousands of comments about the importance of protecting the First Amendment conscience rights of Americans as well as urging respect for life in healthcare. Americans United for Life has filed amicus curiae (friend-of-the-court) briefs in 20 cases on behalf of national medical organizations demonstrating that the life of a new human being begins at fertilization (conception), that so-called ‘emergency contraception’ has a post-fertilization effect that can result in the end of his or her young life, and that forcing employers to provide coverage for such drugs violates their constitutionally protected freedom of conscience.

While the Obama Administration has tinkered with the regulations, nothing has changed. The so-called “accommodation” operates with the same failures after the recent, interim final rule issued in August 2014. HHS makes it explicitly clear that it will force the religious employer’s insurance issuer to include the objected-to items and services. The inappropriate and coercive impact on the plan paid and arranged for by the religious employer remains the same.

To file your own comment with HHS, click here.

AUL Stands with Arizona Legislators Fighting to Protect Women

By Americans United for Life
Friday, October 10th, 2014

“The real war on women takes place in abortion clinics across the country as the abortion industry fights for profits, for secrecy and for reduced protections for women and their unborn children,” said AUL’s Dr. Charmaine Yoest.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (10-10-14) – In an effort to protect women and girls from dangerous life-ending drugs used in chemical abortions, AUL filed an amicus curiae (“friend-of-the-court”) brief in the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of 38 Arizona legislators. The brief is filed in Humble v. Planned Parenthood in support of a 2012 state law based on AUL model legislation and regulates the administration of life-ending drugs. The health and safety standard at issue in the case requires that life-ending drugs, such as the RU-486 regimen, be provided only as prescribed by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration. “As the abortion industry fights for higher profits and lower standards, we continue fighting to protect women from the legal back-alley,” said Americans United for Life President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest. “Chemical abortion drugs are dangerous. One study found that chemical abortion failed with 18.3 percent of women who are given it – that’s almost one in five – and women have died when given these deadly drugs by abortion providers like Planned Parenthood.”

She continued: “The real war on women takes place in abortion clinics across the country as the abortion industry fights for profits, for secrecy and for reduced protections for women and their unborn children.”

The Arizona law in question was challenged by Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers seeking to administer abortion-inducing drugs outside of restrictions put in place by the FDA. A federal district court refused to stay the law while litigation proceeds, but the Ninth Circuit reversed that determination and enjoined the law. Arizona is now asking the Supreme Court to grant certiorari to hear the case on appeal and reverse the Ninth Circuit’s decision.

Since the RU-486 regimen was approved, thousands of women have faced complications, many of them life-threatening. Both the FDA and the drug manufacturer have acknowledged the substantial risk of complications following use of the RU-486 regimen. In fact, the FDA acknowledged these risks when it approved the drugs under a special code section used for drugs that can be safely used only if distribution or use is restricted.

At least fourteen women are known to have died. Eight of these women died of severe bacterial infections that would not otherwise harm healthy women. All eight of those women were instructed to use the drugs in a manner that directly contravened the approved FDA protocol.

The Arizona law seeks to ensure that the RU-486 regimen is administered only in the way approved by the FDA. Rather than allowing providers to hand out dangerous drugs and send women home to self-administer away from physician oversight and beyond the gestational limit approved by the FDA, the law requires that the drugs be administered in a clinical setting within the gestational limit approved by the FDA.

AUL’s brief, available here, was filed on behalf of Senators Kimberly Yee (bill sponsor), Andy Biggs (President), Gail Griffin, (President Pro Tempore), Nancy Barto, Judy Burges, David Farnsworth, Al Melvin, Rick Murphy, Steve Pierce, Don Shooter, Kelli Ward, and Steve Yarbrough.

AUL also filed on behalf of Representatives David Gowan (Majority Leader), Rick Gray (Majority Whip), J.D. Mesnard (Speaker Pro Tempore), Andy Tobin (Speaker), John Allen, Brenda Barton, Sonny Borrelli, Paul Boyer, Eddie Farnsworth, John Kavanagh, Adam Kwasman, Debbie Lesko, David Livingston, Phil Lovas, Catherine Miranda, Darin Mitchell, Steve Montenegro, Justin Olson, Warren Petersen, Justin Pierce, Carl Seel, T.J. Shope, Steve Smith, David Stevens, Bob Thorpe, and Kelly Townsend. The brief demonstrates that the Ninth Circuit employed an improper legal standard in order to side with Planned Parenthood and ignored clear Supreme Court precedent giving deference to a state’s interest in regulating abortion to protect women’s health.

AUL Files Against “Phony Fix” in Obamacare’s Anti-Life “Accommodation”

By Americans United for Life
Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

WASHINGTON, D.C. (10-07-14) Americans United for Life has filed an amicus curie (“friend-of-the-court”) brief – AUL’s 20th on anti-life policies in Obamacare – defending the First Amendment conscience rights of Americans. At issue are regulations that allegedly “accommodate” objections to Obamacare’s anti-life policies. “The so-called ‘accommodation’ is a phony fix and changes nothing,” said AUL President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest. “People are still forced to violate their pro-life convictions by subsidizing life-ending drugs and devices. The only ‘change’ is who is to be notified about their concerns.”

Yoest noted that the “alternative process” proposed by HHS requires handing over the name and contact information “of any of the [health insurance] plan’s third party administrators and health insurance issuers,” so HHS can then use that information to force the religious employer’s insurer to include the objected-to life-ending drugs and devices. The coercive impact on the plan that is paid and arranged for by the religious employer remains the same.

“This phony fix also discriminates, particularly against those who care about the unborn and who do not work directly at a religious ministry,” noted Yoest. “Obamacare’s regulations substantially burden the beliefs of people working in family businesses and non-profits that are non-religious in nature, including AUL. This flies in the face of how the Supreme Court ruled in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby.”

Importantly, the U.S. Supreme Court held in Hobby Lobby that “[b]y requiring [Plaintiffs] and their companies to arrange for such coverage, the HHS mandate demands that they engage in conduct that seriously violates their religious beliefs.” And like the job-killing fines the Obama Administration threatened to impose on family businesses under Obamacare, if a non-profit religious employer does not “yield to this demand, the economic consequences will be severe.”

AUL filed our brief (available here) in the Second Circuit in the case Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York v. Sebelius. AUL’s brief is on behalf of eight national organizations including the Association of American Physicians & Surgeons (AAPS), American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians & Gynecologists (AAPLOG), Christian Medical Association, Catholic Medical Association, the National Catholic Bioethics Center, Alabama Physicians for Life (APFL), National Association of Pro Life Nurses (NAPN), and National Association of Catholic Nurses.

Women Win As Texas Health and Safety Standards Go to Work in Abortion Clinics, says AUL

By Americans United for Life
Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

“These health and safety standards close no clinics,” noted Yoest. “Instead, clinics close when they refuse to offer women minimally acceptable care, which happens all too often. They choose to close when they choose to subject women and their unborn children to their profit-focused, dangerous practices.”

WASHINGTON, D.C. (10-02-14) A law requiring abortion clinics to meet the same medical standards as other facilities performing outpatient surgeries, and requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges should emergency care be needed, will go into effect immediately in Texas as a result of a U.S. 5th Circuit Court decision late Thursday. The appeals court panel disagreed with a lower court judge who ruled that the health and safety standards could not go into effect while the constitutional issues were being litigated.

“Women will be safer from Big Abortion’s deadly, neglect and callous practices as a result of this courageous 5th Circuit Court ruling,” said Americans United for Life President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest. “Women won in Texas today. Without today’s ruling, women and their unborn children would bear the deadly risk of abortion clinics that operate with substandard practices. It’s time to hold an under-regulated, profit-driven, largely unscrutinized Big Abortion industry accountable for the so-called ‘care’ they sell.”

“These health and safety standards close no clinics,” noted Yoest. “Instead, clinics close when they refuse to offer women minimally acceptable care, which happens all too often. They choose to close when they choose to subject women and their unborn children to their profit-focused, dangerous practices.”

In March 2014, a different, and all female, panel of the 5th Circuit upheld Texas’ admitting privileges requirement, but several abortion providers had again challenged the requirement claiming it was unconstitutional as specifically applied to them.

Both requirements were part of House Bill 2, enacted in 2013 during a special session of the Texas legislature. Americans United for Life worked with allies in Texas to pass this comprehensive and protective legislation. AUL has led the charge in the states to require abortion clinics to meet comprehensive health and safety standards routinely applied to other types of medical facilities.

“For more than a decade, AUL has led the nationwide effort to combat the reality of legal ‘back-alley’ abortions, advocating for common sense and comprehensive regulation and oversight of abortion clinics across the nation,” said Dr. Yoest. “Since Roe v. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly acknowledged that a state has ‘a legitimate interest’ in seeing to it that abortion, like any other medical procedure, is performed under minimally acceptable circumstances in order to protect at least the woman.”

For more information on life-saving laws as found in AUL’s Women’s Protection Project, click here.

In Nation Founded on Rule of Law, Obama Administration Breaks the Law and its Promises, says AUL

By Americans United for Life
Thursday, September 18th, 2014

“Americans are funding death with monies designed to sustain life through real healthcare,” said AUL’s General Counsel Ovide Lamontagne. “The GAO report confirms that the Obama Administration has broken the law under the Affordable Care Act and ignores the President’s Executive Order by paying for abortions with taxpayer funds.”

WASHINGTON, D.C. (09-18-14) “The Obama Administration is breaking the law by allowing abortions to be paid for under Obamacare, which expressly prohibits direct or indirect funding for abortion. Just as important, the Administration is breaking its promise to the American people made at the 11th hour in order to pass the Affordable Care Act, which we now know is a landmark anti-life law, interwoven with anti-life policies,” said Americans United for Life General Counsel Ovide Lamontagne at a Thursday news conference on Capitol Hill, in which pro-life leaders joined members of the U.S. House to discuss this week’s GAO report on abortion funding.

Lamontagne added his voice to the calls made by House members and pro-life leaders for the U.S. Senate to pass H.R. 7, the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act” and made the following remarks:

“Sadly, Nancy Pelosi had it right when she said that Congress would have to pass Obamacare to find out what was in it. But there was one exception, and that was the clear command in the law that taxpayer monies would not fund abortion. Without that assurance, Obamacare would not have passed. At the time, the law was modified through Executive Order designed with a Covert Abortion Premium Mandate in which taxpayer funds would always be separate from abortion funds. Even with the Executive Order, AUL warned that the American people were being deceived by how the abortion industry was sneaking abortion coverage paid by individuals into healthcare accounts.

“But the language in the law and the Executive Order is unambiguous—separate payments are required for abortion funding. Yet, the GAO found that insurance companies are not being required to collect separate payments. In fact, the Obama Administration is telling issuers that they do not need to collect two checks. The GAO found that when issuers seek guidance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), they are told that they can merely itemize the amount of a premium that will be used to pay for abortions.

“The Obama Administration has broken its promises and is violating the law by paying for abortions with taxpayer funds. And they instruct insurance companies to follow their lead in entangling taxpayers with abortionists. Americans are funding death with monies designed to sustain life through real healthcare. This violates the rule of law, and violates the very purpose of healthcare. Real healthcare respects life.

“Americans United for Life joins this distinguished company in calling for passage H.R. 7, the ‘No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act’ and calls on members of the House and Senate to repeal Obamacare and to begin again in building life-affirming healthcare.”

Abortion is woven into the healthcare law at multiple levels, making repeal of the law a pro-life necessity, including:

  • Failing to prohibit the use of federal tax dollars for abortion, abortion coverage, and abortion-inducing drugs and devices.
  • Pretending that the Hyde Amendment protections were enough to prohibit direct payment for abortion.
  • Permitting federally subsidized Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) to provide abortion coverage through the state insurance exchanges required in all 50 states.
  • Failing to prohibit all multi-state qualified health plans from providing coverage for abortion.
  • Including a “preventive care” mandate that is being used to force coverage of drugs and devices known to end life.
  • Failing to provide comprehensive First Amendment conscience protections for individuals, employers, and insurance companies that have religious or moral objections to abortion.

For more information on the Covert Abortion Premium act, click here. To learn more on how abortions are funded in Obamacare, click here. To learn how Real Healthcare Respects Life, click here.

GAO Report Reveals Abortion Funding in Obamacare

By Americans United for Life
Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

“Americans are paying for Abortion out of federally-subsidized premiums.
That is taxpayer funding for abortion, period,” said AUL’s Dr. Charmaine Yoest.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (09-16-14) “The Obama Administration has completely failed to keep its promise to protect taxpayer dollars from abortion funding. The release of the non-partisan federal Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on Obamacare abortion funding demonstrates that Americans are paying for abortion in their healthcare,” said Americans United for Life President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest. “AUL stood with the majority of Americans on the issue of life during the debates over healthcare. At that time, 7 in 10 Americans self-identified both as pro-life and pro-choice said they did not want their tax dollars going to support abortion. But today, we have proof that abortionists have taxpayers to thank for their profit margins.”

Yoest continued, “The report is compelling. It documents how the Obama Administration has abandoned and even undermined the very promises that enabled the healthcare legislation to pass the U.S. House of Representatives.”

When objections to taxpayer funding for abortion or abortion coverage nearly brought down the bill, it took an eleventh hour “compromise”—statutory language provided by Senator Ben Nelson (D-NE) and a promised executive order—to save the ACA. Now, over four years later, the GAO report confirms that the abortion deal was effectively meaningless.

The language in the law is unambiguous—“separate payments” are required for abortion funding. Yet, insurance issuers are not collecting separate payments. In fact, the Obama Administration is telling issuers that they do not need to collect two checks. When issuers seek guidance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), they are told that they can merely itemize the amount of a premium that will be used to pay for abortions.

“Abortions are being paid for out of federally-subsidized premiums. That is taxpayer funding for abortion, period,” said Yoest.

Abortion is woven into the healthcare law at multiple levels, making repeal of the law a pro-life necessity, including:

  • Failing to prohibit the use of federal tax dollars for abortion, abortion coverage, and abortion-inducing drugs and devices.
  • Pretending that the Hyde Amendment protections were enough to prohibit direct payment for abortion.
  • Permitting federally subsidized Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) to provide abortion coverage through the state insurance exchanges required in all 50 states.
  • Failing to prohibit all multi-state qualified health plans from providing coverage for abortion.
  • Including a “preventive care” mandate that is being used to force coverage of drugs and devices known to end life.
  • Failing to provide comprehensive First Amendment conscience protections for individuals, employers, and insurance companies that have religious or moral objections to abortion.

Real healthcare respects life. To learn more, click here.

AUL Joins Fight for Workplace Protections for Pregnant Women

By Americans United for Life
Friday, September 12th, 2014

“It was absolutely unacceptable that while other (UPS) employees’ physical needs were accommodated, a hard-working pregnant mother was not given the same options,” said AUL President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (09-12-14) – Americans United for Life filed an amicus brief this week, fighting for continued workplace protections for pregnant mothers, at issue in Young v United Parcel Service (UPS). The landmark case aims to preserve the employment protections of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 (PDA) for working mothers. AUL Senior Counsel Clarke D. Forsythe was instrumental in drafting the brief and will serve as co-counsel in the case along with AUL General Counsel Ovide M. Lamontagne. Lead counsel on the brief are Carrie Severino (counsel of record) and Jonathan Keim of the Judicial Education Project, and Professor Thomas Berg and Professor Teresa Collett of the University of St. Thomas School of Law.

“Americans United for Life joined this effort to empower women working to provide for their families and to take care of their unborn children. It was absolutely unacceptable that while other employees’ physical needs were accommodated, a hard-working pregnant mother was not given the same options for lighter duty,” said AUL President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest. “This case is about protecting pregnant mothers from employment discrimination. Women should not suffer physical hardship at work or lose their jobs because they are having a baby. And pregnant mothers should not be refused the same accommodations offered others.”

In this case, Peggy Young, a pregnant mother, was a driver for UPS. Though other workers received a “lighter duty” accommodation when needed, Peggy was denied one during her pregnancy, in violation of the federal PDA. Young lost in the two lower courts. The Supreme Court agreed to hear her appeal on July 1 (No. 12-1226) and will hear arguments in the case in the coming term that starts Monday, October 6th.

The brief was filed on behalf of 23 pro-life groups and the Judicial Education Project, including: All Our Lives, American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians & Gynecologists (AAPLOG), American Life League, Anglicans for Life (AFL), Bethany Christian Services, Birthmother Ministries, the Catholic Medical Association, the Christian Legal Society, Christian Adoption Services, Concerned Women for America (CWA), Democrats for Life of America (DFLA), the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) of the Southern Baptist Convention, Feminists For Nonviolent Choices, Heartbeat International, Inc., Law of Life Project (LOLP), Life Legal Defense Foundation (LLDF), March for Life Education and Defense Fund, the National Association of Evangelicals, the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA), 

A copy of the brief is available here

What the New York Times forgot to say about abortion …

By Charmaine Yoest
Friday, August 29th, 2014

I wanted to be sure you saw that the New York Times, in a national profile piece out now for its weekend magazine, included Americans United for Life board member and prominent physician Dr. Monique Chireau in a long overdue discussion. Just how safe are chemical abortion drugs? And whom can you trust to tell you the truth? 

mcReporter Emily Bazelon wrote: “Monique Chireau, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Duke University School of Medicine and a board member of Americans United for Life, says the number of women who die or suffer serious complications from abortions may be higher than reported. ‘The truth is we have no idea what the rates of morbidity and mortality for abortions are in the United States, because the data system is flawed,’ she told me. Some states don’t accurately report, she said, and the numbers may not be dependable, because women who go to the doctor or emergency room with complications may be reluctant to say that they’ve had a medical abortion. ‘Despite all we may hear about abortion being a benign procedure, it’s really not,’ Chireau said of the pills.” 

Abortion harms women. In fact, abortion – including chemical abortion from life-ending drugs – should come with a warning label. Chemical abortions have resulted in deaths when women’s bodies became wracked with deadly infection. And women taking life-ending drugs are admitted to hospitals at a higher rate than women experiencing surgical abortion. 

Of course, the New York Times concluded otherwise. Looking the other way and disregarding the evidence, they breezily concluded that abortion is safe. 

That’s why our work is so essential. To learn about abortion, women can’t look to the abortion industry or its political allies. You can’t trust what they say about the harms women experience. 

Abortion data in the United States is VOLUNTARILY reported by abortionists  and some states don’t report at all

In contrast to most important health indicators – births, deaths, cancer, HIV, STDs, etc. – there is no national reporting law requiring that abortions or their complications be reported to national health officials or agencies. Our model legislation has been designed to address this void. And to require women and girls be given all the information available before having an abortion or taking a life-ending drug.

Thank you for helping us hold the abortion industry accountable for their egregious abuse of women, girls and the unborn. Your support enables us to help pass legislation that will force open their closed books, revealing the truth about how abortion harms women in the United States.

AUL Notes “New” HHS Rules for Obamacare Fall Short in Protecting ALL Americans’ Conscience Rights

By Americans United for Life
Friday, August 22nd, 2014

WASHINGTON, D.C. (08-22-14) – Americans United for Life President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest said that the “new” HHS mandate announced today continues to violate American conscience rights. Yoest made the following statement, following news of the 8th Revision to the Health and Human Service mandates issued under Obamacare.

She said: “Once again HHS continues to violate the conscience rights of Americans while claiming just the opposite. Our own organization is a good example of the challenge posed: Americans United for Life is a public interest law firm that opposes life-ending drugs and devices required under the HHS mandate. Nevertheless, because we are not a faith-based group, we may be forced to purchase life-ending drugs and devices following the radical pro-abortion political agenda of this Administration.”

The mandate also creates a second-class citizenship status for people of faith by granting accommodations for some, but not others. Churches are exempt, but other religious employers with the same religious objection to life-ending drugs and devices, for example the Little Sisters of the Poor, are still required to participate in the life-ending drugs scheme devised by HHS. As Justice Kennedy observed in the Hobby Lobby decision, people of faith are still not treated equally under the mandate, and ‘the insistence of an agency such as HHS on distinguishing between different religious believers—burdening one while accommodating the other’ violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

“During the debate over Obamacare, AUL argued repeatedly and testified to the need to protect the conscience rights of all Americans. Today’s regulations attempt to entrench and deepen the anti-life nature of Obamacare. Americans still need protection from the anti-life mandates interwoven into the fabric of the healthcare law.”

Abortion is woven into the healthcare law at multiple levels, making repeal of the law a pro-life necessity, including:

  • Failing to prohibit the use of federal tax dollars for abortion, abortion coverage, and abortion-inducing drugs and devices.
  • Pretending that the Hyde Amendment protections were enough to prohibit direct payment for abortions.
  • Permitting federally subsidized Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) to provide abortion coverage through the state insurance exchanges required in all 50 states.
  • Failing to prohibit all multi-state qualified health plans from providing coverage for abortion.
  • Including a “preventive care” mandate that is being used to force coverage of drugs and devices known to end life.
  • Failing to provide comprehensive First Amendment conscience protections for individuals, employers, and insurance companies that have religious or moral objections to abortion.

Click here to read comments made by Americans United for Life to the Department of Health and Human Services.

Click here to learn more about healthcare that respects life.

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