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Monday, February 07, 2011

After 'forcible rape,' another abortion restriction

Jonathan Capehart's take on HR 358, which would allow hospitals to refuse to perform an abortion if the mother's life is at risk as part of the "conscience clause."
Oh, good grief. No sooner have I celebrated the Republican retreat on the gambit to make "forcible rape" -- whatever that meant -- one of the few exceptions for federal funding of abortions than a new, more dastardly threat to women's right to choose arises.

Under the guise of protecting hospitals, medical clinics and health workers from discrimination because they refuse to perform abortions, H.R. 358 would let them do so without fear of penalty. The "nondiscrimination on abortion" provision is part of the nine-page Protect Life Act, an amendment to last year's health-care law introduced by seven-term Rep. Joe Pitts (R-Pa.) on Jan. 20. In a copy of the manager's amendment I obtained from a source, the odious term "forcible rape" no longer appears. But here's the problem: If enacted this bill would trump the 25-year-old law that guarantees public access to emergency care, including abortions.
Read more at The Washington Post

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