August 11, 2021

Legal Group Criticizes DOJ for Dropping Conscience Rights Lawsuit

The American Center for Law and Justice joined pro-life members of Congress this week in criticizing the Department of Justice for dropping a conscience rights lawsuit against a Vermont Hospital.

The Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against the University of Vermont Medical Center in December 2020 after a pro-life nurse was allegedly coerced into helping with a 2017 abortion, despite her conscientious objection. At the time, the DOJ alleged that the hospital displayed a "pattern" of discrimination against employees who refused to perform abortions for religious or moral reasons.

On July 30, 2020, the DOJ reversed course by filing a notice of voluntary dismissal in a federal district court.

“It’s plainly political in nature,” said Matthew Clark, senior counsel for digital advocacy at the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) in an interview with CNA. The ACLJ represented the Vermont nurse before the DOJ took up the case. “This has now become an assault on those who are pro-life,” Clark continued.

The nurse who was allegedly coerced into performing an abortion said that in 2017, she was told she would be helping with a miscarriage. When she arrived for the procedure, the doctor told her "Don't hate me," before saying that she would be helping with an abortion. When she stated her objection, the doctor denied her request to be replaced.

“It was a surprise. The nurse was on a list of people who had a conscience objection to abortion, so they [the hospital] knew, the head doctor knew, everybody knew, and could have easily switched somebody out,” Clark told CNA.

“Clearly, it was a discrimination,” Clark said of the nurse allegedly being told to participate in the abortion. “Your boss tells you ‘do x,’ and you say, ‘I have an objection to x, can I not do it?’ And they say ‘no, you have to do x.’ The natural implication of that is that there’s going to be something that follows.”

“This isn’t about abortion access,” he said of the incident. “This is actually about taking away the rights of pro-lifers. There was somebody else who could have stepped in, so this goes beyond being pro-abortion. This is anti-life.”

Louisiana Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Challenging Parental Consent Law

Louisiana 19th Judicial District Court
Judge Timothy Kelley
Louisiana recently passed a law strengthening its parental consent requirements for young girls seeking abortion. In response, the abortion lobby predictably filed a lawsuit challenging its constitutionality. Last Thursday, however, District Judge Timothy Kelley dismissed the case.

Much like Illinois's parental notification requirements, minors in Louisiana have the ability to obtain a judicial bypass to have an abortion without parental consent. As a result, abortion businesses around the country found ways to obtain judicial bypasses for minors. These businesses often "shop" for pro-abortion judges who will sign the necessary paperwork to grant a judicial bypass. Louisiana lawmakers were aware of this, so they passed a law that requires a court that grants a judicial bypass to have jurisdiction within the minor's parish of residence (with some exceptions).

“Once again, the abortion industry ran to the shelter of a court to cling to its mission of abortion-on-demand, this time seeking to defend abortion for minors without any barriers or parental involvement,” said Benjamin Clapper, Executive Director of Louisiana Right to Life.  “Judge Kelley rightly dismissed this ridiculous lawsuit and told the abortion businesses they can return to court once they actually have a real plaintiff.”

Angie Thomas, J.D., Associate Director of Louisiana Right to Life, echoed Clapper's sentiment: “We also applaud Judge Kelley for dismissing the case for lack of standing. For years, the abortion industry has challenged the laws that were meant to protect women from that same industry without representing any actual patients. Judge Kelley’s decision hopefully puts a stop to this inappropriate legal tool the abortion industry consistently uses to strike at the will of the people of Louisiana.”

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August 10, 2021

Appeals Court Upholds Tennessee Waiting Period Law

Last Thursday, the full 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a Tennessee law requiring women to wait 48 hours between the time they first visit an abortion clinic and when they have an abortion.

The Center for Reproductive Rights filed the lawsuit on behalf of Tennessee abortion businesses. According to the court's majority opinion, they could not identify women who were harmed by having to wait 48 hours before they could get an abortion.

“None of the plaintiffs’ witnesses could name specific women who could not get an abortion because the waiting period pushed them past the cutoff date,” Judge Amul Thapar wrote for the majority in Bristol Regional Women’s Center v. Slatery. “None of the witnesses could identify specific women whose medical conditions caused complications or psychological harm during the waiting period.”

Uniquely, this waiting period law was in effect for five years before District Judge Bernard A. Friedman allowed the lawsuit to be resurrected. It was enforced from 2015 until Oct. 2020, which meant that both sides could use data collected during that period to argue their points in court. The appellate court noted that between 2015 and 2020, abortion rates remained steady.

“It is one thing to predict that the sky will fall tomorrow,” the ruling states. “It’s quite another thing to maintain that the sky fell five years ago for women seeking abortions when the numbers tell us otherwise.”

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European Court of Human Rights Rules that Life Support can be Removed from UK 2-Year-Old

Alta Fixler with her family
Last week, the European Court of Human Rights declined to intervene to save the life of a child whose life support is in jeopardy. Despite the wishes of two-year-old Alta Fixler's parents, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital refuses to transfer her to another hospital.

The court's decision means that the UK hospital could choose to remove Fixler's life support very soon.

Fixler's parents are Hasidic Jews who strongly object to the hospital's decision because of their beliefs. They believe in the sanctity of human life, and they hope that the hospital will change its mind and allow them to transfer their daughter to one of several facilities that have expressed willingness to provide treatment for their daughter.

Both parents have Israeli citizenship, and Fixler's father has US citizenship as well. Because of this, hospitals and politicians from both countries have reached out to save Alta's life. The US government has approved a non-immigrant visa that would allow Fixler to travel to the US for treatment.

August 9, 2021

Appeals Court Upholds Indiana Abortion Complications Reporting Law

The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals upheld an Indiana law last week mandating requiring medical professionals to report complications from abortion procedures to the state. This decision reversed a District Court decision that had originally blocked the law.

The District Court ruled to block the law, saying that it was "unconstitutionally vague." The three-judge panel from the Court of Appeals disagreed with this assessment. Writing for the majority, Circuit Judge Amy St. Eve wrote, “… Planned Parenthood has not shown that the law is unconstitutionally vague on its face in this pre-enforcement challenge.”

The Indiana law, titled Act No. 340, was signed into law in 2018. It requires medical professionals to report 26 types of abortion complications uterine perforation, cervical perforation, failed abortion, hemorrhaging, infection, shock, cardiac arrest, psychological effects, or preterm labor. A medical professional who fails to do this could be found guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in prison and $1,000 in fines.

“Complications from abortion have been notoriously difficult to track,” said Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita, “resulting in a skewed understanding of the danger abortion poses to women.” Rokita called the ruling “a huge win for the safety of women” and vowed to continue to “fight tirelessly for the rights of the unborn.”

August 6, 2021

IFRL Legislation Page Updated

photo credit: Keith Ewing / Flickr

The IFRL's legislation page has been updated in preparation for the upcoming fall veto session. Be sure to visit for information on pro-abortion and pro-life bills that legislators might push. We will be sure to update you with more information when it becomes available.

You can visit our periodically updated legislation page by clicking here or going to and clicking "legislation" on the right-hand side.

Report Reveals HHS Funneled Millions of Dollars to Fetal Tissue Bank

On Tuesday, Judicial Watch released a report revealing that the Department of Health and Human Services gave at least $2.7 million to a University of Pittsburgh (Pitt) research program that used tissues harvested from aborted babies.

The University of Pittsburgh project sought to "develop a pipeline to the acquisition, quality control and distribution of human genitourinary [urinary and genital organs and functions] samples obtained throughout development (6-42 weeks gestation)." Forty-two weeks is the same as ten months, which is a very late gestational stage.

Judicial Watch obtained documents showing Pitt's interest in harvesting fetal organs for a project called the GenitoUrinary Development Molecular Anatomy Project (GUDMAP).

Pitt came under fire earlier this year for another project that involved grafting scalps harvested from aborted babies and grafting them onto mice. Human hair began to grow from the bodies of these modified mice.

The documents obtained by Judicial Watch show that Pitt was discussing plans to minimize warm ischemic time, or the amount of time that an organ retains its body temperature after losing blood flow. The Center for Medical Progress (CMP) argued on Tuesday that this, alongside the fact that the tissue was harvested after labor-induced abortions, suggests that these babies could be delivered alive.

"If the fetus’ heartbeat and blood circulation continue in a labor induction abortion for harvesting organs, it means the fetus is being delivered while still alive and the cause of death is the removal of the organs," the CMP wrote in a press release.

CMP founder David Daleiden said on Tuesday, "The NIH grant application for just one of Pitt’s numerous experiments with aborted infants reads like an episode of American Horror Story … People are outraged by such disregard for the lives of the vulnerable. Law enforcement and public officials should act immediately to bring the next Kermit Gosnell to justice under the law."

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August 5, 2021

Parents of 2-Year-Old Girl Await UK Court's Decision on Removing Child's Life Support

UK Supreme Court Building
photo credit: Cary Bass-Deschenes / Flickr
A two-year-old girl's life is at stake as a UK hospital is attempting to remove her life support without the consent of her parents. Hospitals in Israel and the US have expressed their willingness to care for the girl, but the British government is refusing to allow her transfer.

The Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust has treated Alta since she was born on Dec. 23, 2018. She has used a ventilator and a feeding tube since birth. When doctors proposed that life-sustaining care be withdrawn, Alta's parents refused. The doctors then applied to the UK's High Court to have Alta's treatment withdrawn and have her transferred to palliative care.

The High Court ruled on May 28 that it was “not in the best interests of Alta for life-sustaining medical treatment to be continued.” The Court of Appeal later dismissed the parents' appeal. The UK Supreme Court's pending decision will decide the value of Alta's life.

The doctors argue that Alta has no chance of recovery, and continued care would cause unnecessary pain justifying their attempt to withhold life-sustaining care.

Two-year-old Alta Fixler's parents both hold Israeli citizenship, and her father also holds U.S. citizenship. Because of this, hospitals and politicians from both nations have been pushing the British government to allow Alta to be transferred to a hospital in one of their countries.

Early last month, the U.S. Embassy in London issued a non-immigrant visa for Alta that would allow her to be transferred to the U.S. for further treatment.

Israel's President Reuven Rivlin wrote to Prince Charles in an effort to help Alta's family transfer her to Jerusalem for treatment.

Alta's parents are Hasidic Jews, whose beliefs oppose the removal of medical treatment that could extend her life.

Biden DOJ Drops Suit Against Vermont Medical Center that Allegedly Forced Nurse to Participate in Abortion

In December of 2020, the Trump administration Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a lawsuit against the University of Vermont Medical Center (UVMMC) for allegedly forcing a nurse to participate in an abortion. Now, under the Biden administration, the DOJ is withdrawing that lawsuit.

The Trump DOJ's explained that its lawsuit "alleges that UVMMC violated the Church Amendments when it chose intentionally and willfully to discriminate against a nurse who plainly made her objection to participating in abortions based on her religious beliefs or moral convictions known to UVMMC."

Last Friday, the Biden DOJ filed a notice of dismissal in Vermont's district court. The brief does not give much of an explanation, but simply reads, “Defendant University of Vermont Medical Center has not served an answer or motion for summary judgment in this action. The United States accordingly notices voluntary dismissal of this action, without prejudice.”

John Daukas, the former acting assistant attorney general for civil rights under the Trump administration, told Fox News, “It’s very hard to understand how anybody could support forcing someone to perform an abortion, who thinks that they’re killing an innocent life. I think that’s just outrageous, and I can’t believe the Justice Department dropped the lawsuit. Setting the morality aside, the law is clear.”

August 4, 2021

New EACH Act Aims to Codify Roe v. Wade and Expand Abortion Funding

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)
Senate Sponsor of the EACH Act
Pro-abortion members of Congress are pushing new legislation that would codify Roe v. Wade into federal law and further expand federal funding of abortion.

The Equal Access to Abortion Coverage in Health Insurance Act, abbreviated as the EACH Act, would legalize abortion throughout all stages of pregnancy and override state laws restricting abortion. Furthermore, the EACH Act would require Medicaid or Federal Employees Health Benefit Plans to provide coverage for abortion services. According to the Washington Times, qualified health plans would be allowed to use the Health Insurance Marketplace tax credit, which was originally designed to help low-income individuals afford health insurance.

The EACH Act has been introduced in Senate Bill S.1021 and its companion bill H.R. 2234 in the House. Illinois Senator Tammy Duckworth (D) is the primary sponsor in the Senate, while Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) is the primary sponsor in the House of representatives.

Several Representatives from Illinois have co-sponsored the House version, however. Those Representatives include Reps. Janice Schakowsky (D-9), Sean Casten (D-6), Danny Davis (D-7) Lauren Underwood (D-14), Mike Quigley (D-5), Marie Newman (D-3), Jesus G "Chuy" Garcia (D-4), Bill Foster (D-11), Bradley Scott Schneider (D-10), and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-8).

Pro-Life Senators Urge Biden Administration to Withdraw Proposed Abortion-Funding Rule

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), one of the 26 pro-life senators
co-authoring a letter to HHS Secretary Becerra
After the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) proposed a new rule for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that would loosen protections preventing the program from funding abortion, 26 pro-life Senators sent a letter to HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra demanding that he withdraw the rule.

As written, the ACA requires abortion coverage to be billed separately in ACA plans. The proposed HHS rule removes that requirement.

In their letter to Becerra, the 26 senators objected to the administration's efforts to “ignore the congressional intent and the unequivocal legal requirements regarding abortion coverage offered through the Affordable Care Act.”

“The purpose and effect of the Proposed Rule, in tandem with partisan legislative efforts to expand the ACA, will be to increase taxpayer funding for abortion on demand, to the financial benefit of Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry,” the senators wrote.

They also argued that the rule could cause many Americans who oppose abortion to unknowingly pay for them.

The letter concludes, “HHS should rigorously enforce the separate abortion payment requirements in the law, as directed by Congress and faithfully implemented by the current regulations, and promptly withdraw the provisions in the Proposed Rule to the contrary.”

August 3, 2021

House Passes Spending Bills Without Hyde Protections

Last week, the House of Representatives passed several spending bills to fund institutions including the State Department, the Capitol Police, and Veterans Affairs. Disturbingly, however, none of those bills included Hyde Amendment protections.

The Hyde amendment has been a bipartisan part of federal spending bills since it was first introduced in 1976 by Illinois Congressman Henry Hyde (R). The amendment bans federal funding of domestic abortions, except in cases of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother. Over the years, Hyde protections are said to have saved over two million American lives.

“Democratic leadership in the House has put Hyde on the chopping block,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life. “After 45 years of bipartisan support, Democrats in the House want to destroy a measure designed to save human lives.”

Additionally, the appropriations bills neglected to include Weldon Amendment and Helms Amendment language. The Weldon Amendment protects pro-life medical providers from being forced to participate in abortion, while the Helms Amendment is aimed to prevent federal funds from being used to pay for abortions in other countries.

August 2, 2021

Over 200 Congressmembers File Brief Supporting Mississippi in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization

200 members of Congress have joined the list of pro-lifers supporting the state of Mississippi in the upcoming Supreme Court case, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

The pro-life legislators give several arguments in their brief
  • Current Supreme Court precedent is inconsistent regarding whether states can place limitations on pre-viability abortions. The legislators wrote, “Some federal courts have interpreted Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey (1992) as creating a bright-line rule that forbids lawmakers from restricting previability abortions in any way, regardless of the strength of the interests at stake.” The brief notes that the Court created an exception to this rule, stating, “the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Act this Court upheld in Gonzales v. Carhart without regard for the viability line.”
  • The American public supports pro-life protections. “The second-trimester regulation embodied in Mississippi’s Gestational Age Act is strongly supported by the American public,” reads the brief. This is echoed by a Marist poll conducted earlier this year. 76% of respondents to that poll wanted abortion to be either banned or limited to the first three months of pregnancy.
  • States, through their legislators and electors, can be trusted to make laws governing abortion. The Congress members' brief reads, “Mississippi's case provides the Court a chance to release its vise grip on abortion politics, as Congress and the States have shown that they are ready and able to address the issue in ways that reflect Americans’ varying viewpoints and are grounded in the science of fetal development and maternal health.”
  • The legistlators' brief reads that states, “have expressed the desire to protect life through a burgeoning number of laws enacted to further the States’ important interests in protecting women from dangerous late-term abortion, ending the destruction of human life based on sexism, racism, or ableism, upholding the integrity of the medical profession against the barbaric practice of dismembering human beings in the womb, and protecting preborn infants from the horrific pain of such abortions.”
  • Finally, the brief argues, “It is long overdue for this Court to return lawmaking to legislators.” It then quotes a dissent by Justice Scalia in a 1988 Supreme Court Case: “The most reliable objective signs [of societal views] consist of the legislation that the society has enacted. It will rarely if ever be the case that the Members of this Court will have a better sense of the evolution in views of the American people than do their elected representatives.”

July 30, 2021

Pelosi's Archbishop Says Devout Catholics Can't Condone Abortion

Salvatore J. Cordileone, Archbishop of San Francisco
Last Thursday, the Archbishop of San Fransisco responded to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi after she cited her Catholic faith while arguing for federal funding of elective abortions. Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, Pelosi's home diocese, disagreed with her stance on the Hyde Amendment and abortion as a whole.

“Let me repeat: no one can claim to be a devout Catholic and condone the killing of innocent human life, let alone have the government pay for it,” he told CNA. “The right to life is a fundamental -- the most fundamental -- human right, and Catholics do not oppose fundamental human rights.”

At a press conference on July 22, Pelosi said that she supported taxpayer funding of abortion because it is “an issue of health, of many women in America, especially those in lower-income situations and in different states.” She mentioned her faith during the conference as well, saying,

“as a devout Catholic and mother of five in six years, I feel that God blessed my husband and me with our beautiful family, five children in six years almost to the day, but... it’s not up to me to dictate that that’s what other people should do, and it [funding of abortion in Medicaid] is an issue of fairness and justice for poorer women in our country.”

Cordileone responded on Thursday,

“To use the smokescreen of abortion as an issue of health and fairness to poor women is the epitome of hypocrisy: what about the health of the baby being killed? What about giving poor women real choice, so they are supported in choosing life?

This would give them fairness and equality to women of means, who can afford to bring a child into the world. It is people of faith who run pro-life crisis pregnancy clinics; they are the only ones who provide poor women life-giving alternatives to having their babies killed in their wombs.”

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Pro-Abortion House Members Block "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act"

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)
After the Biden administration proposed a budget without Hyde Amendment language, pro-life legislators introduced a bill that would prevent federal tax dollars from funding abortion. This week, pro-abortion legislators in the House of Representatives voted to block the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act.

On Tuesday, House Republican leadership and the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus co-chairs filed a motion attempting to force a vote before the full House of Representatives. The next day, however, pro-abortion legislators voted to block that motion. Every Democrat present voted together to block the bill.

Pro-life legislators say that they will continue to put forth motions to call the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act to a vote.

July 29, 2021

National Right to Life asks Supreme Court to Value State Interests in Mississippi Abortion Case

National Right to Life and Louisiana Right to Life together filed a brief asking the Supreme Court to reverse Roe v. Wade and allow states to enact more abortion regulations. The brief argues that normal legal rules have not been applied to abortion decisions and that applying those rules would allow states to protect their interests with abortion regulations.

The Supreme Court will soon consider Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, which involves the abortion lobby's challenge to Mississippi's near-total ban on abortions after 15 weeks. The lower courts have ruled that state abortion bans before viability are unconstitutional. The Supreme Court will decide whether all bans on pre-viability elective abortions are unconstitutional.

National Right to Life and Louisiana Right to Life are asking the Court to make clear what the law actually is since rulings in the past have created confusion among lower courts.

Jomes Bopp, Jr., NRLC's General Counsel for the brief, said:

“Since Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court has twisted the normal rules of law to protect an absolute abortion right and not given full effect to powerful state interests such as protecting preborn life and maternal health. Today, we ask the Court to reverse that tangential path, which will allow greater regulation of abortion, lead to stability in the law, and put Roe itself at issue.”

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July 28, 2021

Arkansas AG Files Supreme Court Brief Defending Ban on Down Syndrome Discriminatory Abortions

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge
Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge filed a brief to the Supreme Court earlier this month in defense of Arkansas Act 619, the Down Syndrome Discrimination by Abortion Prohibition Act.

Arkansas legislators passed Act 619 into law in 2019. Since then, the law was challenged by pro-abortion activists. The law was overturned by a district court, and that court's decision was affirmed by the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in January of 2021.

That decision came not long after the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Tennessee could enforce its ban on discriminatory abortions. The Tennessee law bans abortions when the abortionist knows that the mother is seeking the abortion purely because of the child's sex, race, or diagnosis of Down syndrome. The 8th Circuit acknowledged that this created a circuit split, which opens the way for the Supreme Court to step in.

In her brief, Rutledge asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review the 8th Circuit's decision.

“In my personal experiences, I know individuals with Down syndrome have an extra chromosome, but they also have extra love to give and I will fight for these innocent individuals who are a gift from God,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “The Constitution does not sanction killing an unborn child just because that child may have Down syndrome and I will not stand by and allow this practice to happen.”

WHO Updates Guidelines to Promote DIY Chemical Abortions

The World Health Organization (WHO) released updated guidelines this month encouraging self-administered chemical abortions without the supervision of a doctor.

The new WHO guidelines promote the self-administration of injectable contraception, emergency contraception, and abortion pills—including "in countries where abortion is illegal or restricted."

The WHO has long promoted abortion across the globe and interfered with the beliefs of pro-life countries. International aid from the WHO often includes tools and drugs used during abortions.

Writing for the pro-abortion organization Women First Digital, Lilian Muchoki said that the WHO guidelines are “based on a dream that abortion will be de-medicalized, the same way that contraception and other options are de-medicalized.”

Self-managed abortions can be dangerous not only to unborn children but also to their mothers. If the mother has an undiagnosed pregnancy condition, incorrectly dates her pregnancy, or doesn't correctly follow the process of the abortion-pill regimen (which is especially possible when a doctor is not involved), she is at increased risk of life-threatening complications such as hemorrhage.

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July 27, 2021

Mississippi AG Files Brief Asking Supreme Court to Overturn Roe v. Wade

Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch
Last Thursday, Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch filed a brief with the Supreme Court as part of Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization. In it, she asks the Supreme Court to overturn its two infamous rulings on abortion: Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization is the abortion lobby's challenge to a Missippi law banning most elective abortions after 15 weeks. The Supreme Court agreed to hear the case this fall, and many pundits believe that this case could cause the Supreme Court to reconsider the standing precedent on abortion.

Fitch argued in her brief that the Roe and Casey decisions created “a special-rules regime for abortion jurisprudence that has left these cases out of step with other Court decisions and neutral principles of law applied by the Court.”

“As a result, state legislatures, and the people they represent, have lacked clarity in passing laws to protect legitimate public interests, and artificial guideposts have stunted important public debate on how we, as a society, care for the dignity of women and their children,” Fitch said.

“It is time for the Court to set this right and return this political debate to the political branches of government,” she wrote.

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New Bipartisan Bill Introduced to End Military Policy Encouraging Abortion

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) introduced new legislation this week that would ban military academies from forcing pregnant women to either abort their children or drop out of school.

The Candidates Afforded Dignity, Equality and Training Act of 2021, or CADET Act, is written to amend policies that encourage pregnant women to abort their children. The current policy at military academies is that students can't have dependents. This leaves women who become pregnant with two options: either dropping out of school or aborting their children. If a woman drops out of school rather than choosing abortion, she will be forced to repay the government for the education she received, since she will not be able to serve in the military.

The CADET Act would allow women who get pregnant to take a year off from school to give birth and recover. They will then be allowed to return and graduate a year later than planned. While the woman finishes school, another person would be named as a temporary guardian for the child.

“Under our current system, cadets who become pregnant must either sign away the rights to their child, get an abortion, pay devastating financial responsibilities, or leave the academy altogether,” Cruz said in a press release, adding,

“I am proud to introduce this crucial legislation ensuring cadets in military academies can retain legal guardianship of their children without unnecessary burdens, and most importantly, keep young military families together. The CADET Act is a commonsense step to ensure the brave young women of our Armed Forces have the right level of support to continue their academy training and go on to fulfill their future service as commissioned officers while raising their family.”

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