WASHINGTON-Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia, chair of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, wrote to members of the House Appropriations Committee today urging them not to fund abortions in the District of Columbia. Last week the House subcommittee considering the Financial Services appropriations bill for 2010 voted to permit direct public funding of abortion in the nation’s capital.
Cardinal Rigali said that the subcommittee’s action “effectively nullifies the Dornan amendment,” which for a total of 18 years has prevented public funding of elective abortions in the District. He said this move, “presumably the first step in a broader effort to restore such funding throughout the federal government,” is misguided for three reasons.
“First, public funding of abortion is rejected by the American people, as numerous surveys of public opinion have shown,” Cardinal Rigali said. He also noted that Catholics recently sent “tens of millions of postcards to their elected representatives in Congress, opposing…any weakening or reversal of current appropriations riders on abortion.”
“Second, no lawmaker or Administration can support such a policy change and still claim to support ‘reducing abortions.’ The evidence is overwhelming, and universally recognized by groups on all sides of the abortion issue, that the availability of public funds for abortion greatly increases abortions,” the bishops’ Pro-Life Committee Chair argued.
“Third, this action takes place as Congress is working to win broad support for a much-needed major reform of our health care system,” Cardinal Rigali noted. “This is the worst of all possible times to be injecting the spanisive issue of public abortion funding into the debate on government health policy.”
Cardinal Rigali concluded by urging the full House Appropriations Committee to reverse the subcommittee’s action and retain the funding ban in current law. Read the full text of his letter.
Help keep Catholic media free, support CatholicPhilly.com
You may have noticed “pay walls” greeting you when you visit the websites of newspapers and magazines, both large and small. These mechanisms allow you to read a few articles for free before you’ve got to pay an annual fee if you want to see more.
You won’t find a pay wall on CatholicPhilly.com because we’re more than a news organization. We’re informing, inspiring and forming readers in the Catholic faith every day through the news, features and commentaries that we post on this site and share across social media.
It costs money to provide high-quality coverage of the local Catholic communities we primarily serve, while also distributing national and world news of interest to Catholics, plus the orthodox teachings of the Catholic faith.
Help us in this mission by making a single gift of $40, $50, $100, or more. Your gift will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community.
Make your donation by check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
or by credit card: