By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
Some of the nation’s largest multiracial, multiethnic, and multigenerational faith-based and policy organizations, representing more than 30 million people, went on record to voice opposition to any healthcare bill that funds abortion, violates conscience, rations care, or limits freedom.
Representing the unified position of the organizations signing on to the statement of principles, Mathew Staver, founder of Liberty Council, a non-profit legal service dedicated to promoting traditional values, commented: “We believe social justice includes healthcare reform that lowers the cost, increases quality, and expands choice at the greatest convenience, without moving private health decisions from the doctor’s office to Washington bureaucrats. Individual liberties trump government-imposed obligations. We believe that individuals, communities, and doctors in the free market make better health decisions than government mandates. We believe in incentives, not coercion.”
Mr. Staver continued, “We oppose funding for abortion. Abortion is not healthcare. We support the sanctity of human life from conception to natural death. Life, no matter how young, is not expendable and, no matter how ill or aged, is not to be weighed on a cost-benefit scale. We support conscience laws protecting hospitals and healthcare providers from coerced participation in abortion.
“We oppose government policies pressuring people to forgo or limit treatment because of age or illness. We oppose rationed healthcare due to age, illness or based on a government agency’s determination of ‘quality’ or ‘value’ of life. “President Obama said, ‘under our plan no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions, and federal conscience laws will remain in place.’ But Congress has voted 30 times against amendments that would ban abortion funding. Every proposed bill funds abortion, including the so-called Baucus bill from the Senate Finance Committee. This is unacceptable. We will not support any bill that funds abortion.”
Mr. Staver added: “We support health insurance that is affordable and portable. We support legal reform to stop frivolous lawsuits that drive up healthcare costs, while affording the injured appropriate compensation. We support portability, allowing people to take their healthcare with them so it is not tied to employment. We support options to purchase health insurance across state lines. We support competition; coverage of pre-existing conditions; wellness care and prevention incentives; tax relief that provides a dollar-for-dollar deduction for every dollar spent on premiums or other medical or prescription costs; and a dollar-for-dollar tax deduction with no limit from gross income for every dollar contributed to nonprofit organizations providing healthcare for free or at reduced cost to the needy.”
In conclusion, Mr. Staver said: “We support freedom and the dignity of the individual. We oppose federalization of the healthcare industry that would create a maze of bureaucracy which will impede and delay critical care and decrease the quality of healthcare. We oppose a single-payer, government-run insurance program or the so-called public option. It is time to start over with a truly nonpartisan approach to healthcare.”
Some of the organizations supporting these principles are Deacon Keith Fournier, Editor-in-Chief of Catholic Online; Tim Wildmon, President of the American Family Association; Wendy Wright, president of Concerned Women for America; Phyllis Schlafly, president of the Eagle Forum; Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council Action; Rev. Rob Schenck, President of the National Clergy Council; Steve Ertelt, Editor and CEO of Lifenews.com
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