Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Penny Starr

7/8/2009 (6 years ago)

CNSNews (www.cnsnews.com)

But Obama opposes a regulation put into place by the Bush administration that would require those federally funded providers to certify compliance.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said President Barack Obama supports existing federal laws that prevent federally funded health care providers from forcing doctors and pharmacists who morally oppose abortion from either performing the procedure or providing abortion-inducing medication.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said President Barack Obama supports existing federal laws that prevent federally funded health care providers from forcing doctors and pharmacists who morally oppose abortion from either performing the procedure or providing abortion-inducing medication.

Highlights

By Penny Starr

CNSNews (www.cnsnews.com)

7/8/2009 (6 years ago)

Published in Politics & Policy


WASHINGTON (CNSNews.com) - Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said President Barack Obama supports existing federal laws that prevent federally funded health care providers from forcing doctors and pharmacists who morally oppose abortion from either performing the procedure or providing abortion-inducing medication.

But Obama opposes a regulation put into place by the Bush administration that would require those federally funded providers to certify compliance with the law, Sebelius said.

On March 10, the Obama administration submitted to the Federal Register a proposal to rescind the "conscience clause" rule entitled "Ensuring That Department of Health and Human Services Funds Do Not Support Coercive or Discriminatory Policies or Practices in Violation of Federal Law."

"There really hasn't been a change in status of what the president proposed," Sebelius told CNSNews.com during a conference call with reporters on Monday. "The president continues to support the underlying law.

"He felt the regulation issued in the final days of the Bush administration was overly broad and jeopardizes critical health services for women," she said.

The March 10 proposal states: "The department believes it is important to have an opportunity to review this regulation to ensure its consistency with current Administration policy and to reevaluate the necessity for regulations implementing the Church Amendments, Section 245 of the Public Health Service Act, and the Weldon Amendment."

The Church Amendments are conscience clauses of the Public Health Service Act, enacted at various times during the 1970s, which prohibit the use of federal funds going to health care entities that discriminate against health care professionals who morally object to abortion or sterilization.

In 2005, the Weldon Amendment was adopted as a section of the Consolidated Appropriations Act and re-adopted as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act in 2009. The amendment does not allow federal funding of entities if "such agency, program, or [state or local] government subjects any institutional or individual health care entity to discrimination on the basis that the health care entity does not provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or refer for abortions."

In explaining its proposed rescinding of the Bush administration rule, then-acting HHS Secretary Charles E. Johnson cited the public comments collected during the 60-day comment period that expired on Feb. 27, 2009.

"Commenters asserted that the rule would limit access to patient care and raised concerns that individuals could be denied access to services, with effects felt disproportionately by those in rural areas or otherwise underserved," the acting secretary wrote.

"The Department believes that the comments on the August 2008 proposed rule raised a number of questions that warrant further careful consideration," Johnson wrote.

In his summary of the rule, then-HHS secretary under the Bush administration, Michael Leavitt, wrote that the regulation was meant to ensure that pro-life health care professionals were protected and that federally funded health entities were following the law.

"The Department of Health and Human Services proposes to promulgate regulations to ensure that Department funds do not support morally coercive or discriminatory practices or policies in violation of federal law, pursuant to the Church Amendments (42 U.S.C. § 300a-7), Public Health Service (PHS) Act §245 (42 U.S.C. § 238n), and the Weldon Amendment (Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2008, Pub. L. No. 110-161, § 508(d), 121 Stat. 1844, 2209)," reads the summary.

"This notice of proposed rulemaking proposes to define certain key terms. Furthermore, in order to ensure that recipients of Department funds know about their legal obligations under these nondiscrimination provisions, the Department proposes to require written certification by certain recipients that they will comply with all three statutes, as applicable," the summary added.

Sebelius refused to answer a follow-up question about if and when the "conscience clause" rule would be officially rescinded by President Obama.

---

CNSNews.com is a division of the Media Research Center, a not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) organization. Like National Public Radio and the Public Broadcasting System, CNSNews.com is able to provide its services and information to the public at no cost, thanks to the generous support of our thousands of donors and their tax-deductible contributions.This article is reprinted with permission.



Comments


More Politics & Policy

States revolt, 11 sue to block disruptive Obama restroom edict, protect kids Watch

Image of Obama's policy opens restrooms to perverts who want access to victims in restrooms.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Eleven states are challenging the Obama edict that schools should allow kids to use whatever bathroom they choose, regardless of their gender. Obama issued the edict last week as a means of joining the "transgender" bandwagon that is sweeping the nation. Unfortunately, ... continue reading


LOL! Clinton chief upset about what happens when a public servant breaks the law, begs judge to save her from criticism Watch

Image of Cheryl Mills is unhappy that her deposition might become the source of criticism.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Hillary Clinton's former chief of staff from the State Department, Cheryl Mills, has asked a court to shield her from conservatives who are seeking the transcripts and recordings of her deposition scheduled for Friday. Mills is worried she will be taken out of context ... continue reading


REVEALED: China has an army of paid trolls, guess who else has one? Watch

Image of Don't feed the trolls.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The next time you encounter an internet troll, be warned, he could be getting paid to fan the flames, or to douse your conversation. A new study our of Harvard reveals that China is using an army of 448 million fake troll accounts to influence public opinion. And China ... continue reading


REPORT: Inspector General SLAMS Hillary Clinton for BREAKING LAW, was WARNED by staffer, whom she PUNISHED! Watch

Image of Audit: Hillary Clinton broke the law.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The State Department Inspector General has ruled that Hillary Clinton broke department rules for using a private email server and for deleting emails she sent and received during her tenure. The report was released on Capitol Hill today. LOS ANGELES, CA (California ... continue reading


You won't believe who buys the most weapons from the US! Watch

Image of The United States provides the most weapons to which country (NATO)?

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The United States provides 33 percent of the world's arms such as fighter jet aircraft, tanks and more - so which countries are buying? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the number one country purchasing ... continue reading


Obama risking national security to meet political obligation? Watch

Image of Is the Obama administration sacrificing national security in favor of meeting quotas (Reuters)?

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

With many Senate Democrats calling for a faster processing, the Obama Administration and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) have drastically increased the number of Syrian refugees admitted into the United States. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


FBI investigating Gov. McAuliffe, Clinton Foundation for Chinese ties Watch

Image of Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe is under FBI investigation for accepting illegal campaign contributions.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The FBI is investigating Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe on the grounds that he accepted illegal campaign contributions. There is overlap between his donors and donors to the Clinton campaign. Investigators have discovered that a Chinese politician made a particularly ... continue reading


American Steel v. China's Production - There is no such thing as free trade Watch

Image of American steel jobs have drastically fallen (iisssc).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

As American steel production falters, China has begun efforts to dump its excess steel at slashed prices. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to Thomas J. Gibson, president and CEO of the American Iron and Steel Institute, and Chuck Schmitt, president of SSAB ... continue reading


'Shame, shame, shame': House Democrats boo Republicans Watch

Image of House Republicans halt the hostile amendment in its tracks (EPA).

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Chaos erupted as the US House of Representatives refused to pass an amendment meant to strip away religious freedom and protections for religious contractors and those who work with the federal government. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - When House Democrats ... continue reading


Judge SPANKS Obama's attorneys who LIED to the court! Watch

Image of Judge Andrew Hanen shut down Obama's attorneys for lying.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

An angry federal judge has ordered Justice Department attorneys to take annual ethics classes for lying. The lies told by Justice Department attorneys tricked 26 states into filing a lawsuit against the administration. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - U.S. ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Peter 4:7-13
7 The end of all things is near, so keep your minds calm and sober for ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 96:10, 11-12, 13
10 Say among the nations, 'Yahweh is king.' The world is set firm, it ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 11:11-26
11 He entered Jerusalem and went into the Temple; and when he had ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 27th, 2016 Image

St. Augustine of Canterbury
May 27: At the end of the sixth century anyone would have ... Read More