By Karen N Berkon, NCRegister
The Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) is set to be signed if congress passes it on January 21-22 of 2009. If made a law then all limitations on abortion will be lifted which will result in the following:
1) All hospitals, including Catholic hospitals will be required to perform abortions upon request. If this happens Bishops vow to close down all Catholic hospitals, more then 30% of all hospitals in the United States.
2) Partial birth abortions would be legal and have no limitations.
3) All U.S. tax payers would be funding abortions.
4) Parental notification will no longer be required.
5) The number of abortions will increase by a minimum of 100,000 annually.
The Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) is an oppressive law mandating participation and cooperation from every American citizen in unlimited abortion. Currently, FOCA is out of committee but still awaits passage through Congress, and with the sweeping Democratic victories in the House and Senate in this past election, that could happen very soon. President-elect Barack Obama declared to a Planned Parenthood gathering on July 17, 2007, that the first thing he would do as president of the United States would be to sign the Freedom of Choice Act.
Just how will FOCA affect abortion rights and the pro-life movement in this country? FOCA’s “Statement of Policy” reads:
“It is the policy of the United States that every woman has the fundamental right to choose to bear a child, to terminate a pregnancy prior to fetal viability, or to terminate a pregnancy after fetal viability when necessary to protect the life or health of the woman.”
Keep in mind the phrase “fundamental right,” for it is the key to understanding the intent of FOCA. Historically, the right to abortion became law in 1973 with the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision that established a woman’s right to abortion based on the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and subsequently, restricted state laws on abortion. The 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey decision loosened those restrictions, giving states greater autonomy with regard to abortion regulation.
Since then, laws have been passed to exempt taxpayers from funding abortions both nationally, in 1976 via the Hyde Amendment, and internationally, in 2001 when President Bush restored the Mexico City Policy.
Currently, many states have parental-notification laws for minors seeking an abortion, conscience clauses exempting health-care workers and providers from participating in abortions, informed-consent laws which require consequential information for women seeking abortions, as well as various state restrictions on late-term abortions.
The Partial-Birth Abortion Ban, which requires the partial extraction of a fetus from the birth canal before the abortionist performs the abortion, was upheld by the Supreme Court on April 18, 2007.
For more on this, go here.