Monday, November 22, 2004

Congressional Nutbags And Anti-Abortion Bill Alert!

Well, Shrub and Company are barely sleeping off their victory hangover, and are already hard at work chipping away at our freedoms:

Negotiators Add Abortion Clause to Spending Bill

ASHINGTON, Saturday, Nov. 20 - House and Senate negotiators have tucked a potentially far-reaching anti-abortion provision into a $388 billion must-pass spending bill, complicating plans for Congress to wrap up its business and adjourn for the year.

The abortion language would bar federal, state and local agencies from withholding taxpayer money from health care providers that refuse to provide or pay for abortions or refuse to offer abortion counseling or referrals. Current federal law, aimed at protecting Roman Catholic doctors, provides such "conscience protection'' to doctors who do not want to undergo abortion training. The new language would expand that protection to all health care providers, including hospitals, doctors, clinics and insurers.

The provision could affect millions of American women, according to Senator Barbara Boxer, Democrat of California, who warned Friday that she would use procedural tactics to slow Senate business to a crawl if the language was not altered.

"I am willing to stand on my feet and slow this thing down," Ms. Boxer said. "Everyone wants to go home, I know that, and I know I will not win a popularity contest in the Senate. But they should not be doing this. On a huge spending bill they're writing law, and they're taking away rights from women."

Some lawmakers and Congressional aides interpreted the House leaders' insistence as reflection of the new political strength of the anti-abortion movement and of Christian conservatives, who played an important role in re-electing Mr. Bush this month.

I hope I am not the only one scared shitless by this.....

The idea that any medical professional can refuse medical training on the grounds that it makes them personally uncomfortable is repugnant. Can you imagine that working with any other procedure? "I know your husband needs a blood transfusion to save his life, but the doctor and nurse are Jehovah's witnesses, and refused training for transfusions. Sorry! Or, "I realize your child has developed trichinosis from that bad ham on rye, but we're a Jewish hospital and the health-care workers here won't stand for pork consumption, and won't learn how to treat bad reactions. You shouldn't be eating pork anyway!"

What really frightens and sickens me is that they shoved this nasty piece of backwoods, fanatical Christian agenda into a must-pass bill. Is there no end to the dirty pool these nutbags will play to force the rest of us into their tiny little box?

Kudos to Senator Boxer (and a pox on the original author here, who referred to the Senator as "Ms." instead of by her proper title) for standing up to this disgusting piece of garbage. You may not win a Congressional popularity contest....but you're aces with me.


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