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Comments on the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban

-- Fr. Frank Pavone
November 9, 2003

In predictable fashion, the pro-abortion forces have found judges who say that despite the actions of the Legislative and Executive branches of government, and the clearly expressed will of the American public that partial-birth abortion be banned, this procedure must be allowed to continue.

The courts that have made these judgments have done so based on the absence of a health exception in the legislation. Yet they pay no reverence to the fact-finding powers of the United States Congress, which did not exactly ignore the issue of a health exception, but after many years of investigation and testimony, with far more fact-finding resources than any court system has, and many more hearings and deliberations, reached the carefully considered conclusion that this procedure is never necessary for a woman's health.

The Congress does not overstep its bounds here. It is quite aware of the Supreme Court's rulings. It is also aware of the fact that we have three, not one, branches of government, and that each is capable of acting to interpret and defend the Constitution.

Along with the efforts that will be made to defend the ban in the courts, renewed efforts need to be made on the part of all Americans to understand, appreciate, and assert the authority of the legislative branch of government, and re-establish a true balance of powers, taking away from the courts, if necessary, jurisdiction over certain critical issues on which they have blatantly contradicted the will of the American people. Alexander Hamilton and others, in fact, wrote at the founding of our country that judges who neglected the rightful authority of the Legislature, and the will of the people, deserved impeachment.

President Andrew Jackson summed up the balance of powers issue when he wrote, "Each public officer who takes an oath to support the Constitution swears that he will support it as he understands it, and not as it is understood by others...The opinion of the judges has no more authority over the Congress than the opinion of Congress has over the judges, and on that point the President is independent of both" (Richardson, Compilation, VII, p.582).

The last forty years have seen an amazing and growing display of judicial arrogance, and it continues to intensify. It was the Courts, not the people, which took prayer and Bible reading out of public schools. It was the Courts, not the people, which legalized the killing of unborn children. It was the Courts, not the people, who refuse to prohibit partial-birth abortion. It was the Courts, not the people, which could not endure a monument of the Ten Commandments in the Alabama Supreme Court. And it is now the Courts, not the people, which are questioning the very nature of marriage.

It is time for action. Let your elected representatives in Congress know that you want the legislature to assert its authority more vigorously. Let your Senators know that you want them to confirm judges who realize the limits of judicial authority. Help everyone within your reach understand these critical problems and their solution. And in 2004, vote accordingly!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Jerry Horn, 540-785-4733

Date: November 5, 2003

Priests for Life on Partial-birth Abortion: We have Turned a Corner

Priests for Life National Director Fr. Frank Pavone issued the following statement on the occasion of the President's signing of the ban on partial-birth abortion:

"Today America has turned a corner in the war against abortion. For the first time since Roe vs. Wade, an abortion procedure has been banned. Rhetoric has yielded to reason, as the public has focused on the concrete violence of the partial-birth abortion procedure, rather than on abstract arguments about 'abortion rights.'

"Regarding pro-abortion efforts to stop this ban in court, my hope is that they fight with all their might, because that only serves to instruct the public that Roe vs. Wade is far worse than most people think.

"We thank God for President Bush, who by signing this legislation, as well as the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act in 2002, has put into place significant precedents in law that will begin to restore protection to preborn children."

Priests for Life has done intensive work to instruct the public about partial-birth abortion since 1993 via television, radio, internet, the press, and the Churches of America. Priests for Life plans to instruct voters about the significance of partial-birth abortion as an electoral issue in 2004.

Click here for more info on partial-birth abortion.

Priests for Life
PO Box 141172 • Staten Island, NY 10314
Tel. 888-735-3448, (718) 980-4400 • Fax 718-980-6515
mail@priestsforlife.org