Effort to Rescind Pro-life Law Is Halted

WASHINGTON, D.C., APRIL 25, 2005 (Zenit.org).- A U.S. senator halted her effort to take away government protection from health-care providers who don’t want to provide or participate in abortions.

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Senator Barbara Boxer of California gave up her chance for a vote last Thursday to rescind the Hyde/Weldon Conscience Protection Amendment which became law last December.

The law prohibits governmental discrimination against health care providers who choose not to get involved with abortions. Boxer reportedly realized she did not have the votes necessary to rescind the provision.

A U.S. bishops’ aide welcomed the news.

«The vote to kill conscience protection for pro-life health care providers made no sense,» said Cathy Ruse, spokeswoman for the episcopate’s Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities.

«How can you claim to be ‘pro-choice,’ and say that Catholic and other health care providers have no right to choose not to participate in abortions?» she asked.

«Conscience rights should be an area of common ground among Senators who disagree on the issue of abortion itself,» Ruse said. «We are grateful that the scheduled vote against this important conscience protection was canceled.»

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