• Tag Archives Abortion
  • Say It Ain’t So, Michael Steele! RNC Insurance Plan Covers Abortion

    Say it ain’t so, Michael Steele! How could it possibly be true that the RNC’s health insurance plan has covered elective abortion since 1991?

    From POLITICO:

    The Republican National Committee’s health insurance plan covers elective abortion – a procedure the party’s own platform calls “a fundamental assault on innocent human life.”

    Federal Election Commission Records show the RNC purchases its insurance from Cigna. Two sales agents for the company said that the RNC’s policy covers elective abortion.

    Informed of the coverage, RNC spokeswoman Gail Gitcho told POLITICO that the policy pre-dates the tenure of current RNC Chairman Michael Steele.

    “The current policy has been in effect since 1991, and we are taking steps to address the issue,” Gitcho said.

    The RNC moved quickly Wednesday to assuage any concerns its members might have.

    In a letter obtained by POLITICO, RNC Chief of Staff Ken McKay writes to the 168 committeemen and committeewomen across the country that Steele "takes this issue very seriously."

    He writes that the RNC has been evaluating its health insurance policy and will continue to do so.

    Since 1991? Are you kidding me? Are we seriously talking almost two decades of the Republican National Committee making sure their employees have access to elective abortion?

    And here’s the real question: in the midst of all the GOP wrangling over abortion in the current health care debate, for how long would the RNC have continued to offer abortion benefits to their employees if POLITICO had not uncovered this?

    There’s more here.


  • Sister Donna Quinn Suspends Activism for Abortion Rights

    There’s a headline you won’t see often anywhere.

    From the Chicago Tribune:

    For decades, Sister Donna Quinn has championed the rights of women to use contraception, seek ordination and end unwanted pregnancies.

    The Dominican nun has picketed for abortion rights inWashington, petitioned the pope for a female archbishop and escorted women into abortion clinics.

    But as the Vatican turns up scrutiny of the nation’s nuns and U.S. Roman Catholic bishops refuse to support universal health care if it covers abortion, Quinn has put her crusade on hold.

    "I want to be clear that this is my decision," she said in a statement Tuesday, saying she would suspend her role as a peacekeeper outside the ACU Health Clinic in Hinsdale. "Respect for women’s moral agency is of critical importance to me, and I look forward to continuing to dialogue with our congregation on these matters as a way of informing my actions as well as educating the community."

    On Tuesday, the Wisconsin-based Sinsinawa Dominican order announced that Quinn had been reprimanded for escorting patients into a Hinsdale clinic that provides abortions.

    "After investigating the allegation, congregation leaders have informed Sister Donna that her actions are in violation of her profession," Sister Patricia Mulcahey, head of the Sinsinawa Dominicans, said in a statement. "They regret that her actions have created controversy."

    It’s no surprise that Sr. Donna Quinn has been asked to curtail her activities. What is amazing, in this climate, is the fact that she has been able to keep working in these activities so long.

    What should be more alarming for American Catholics is the fact that the Vatican is investigating nuns in the United States. The sisters "regret that [Sr. Donna Quinn’s] actions have created controversy?" Really? Are the sisters aware of the controversy Christ created? Do they not remember that Jesus went out of his way to spend time with sinners? With those who society stepped on?

    Did you know that the Vatican is requiring that each order foot the bill for these investigations? Yes, that’s true. Each order must pay for the airfare, room and board for the Inquisitors from Rome. No kidding at all.

    The Vatican would do well to get in touch with the spirit of these women who do these good works.

    But the fraternity of bishops, radical conservatives all, won’t get that ever.

    My prayers are with Sr. Donna Quinn, and with all American nuns under investigation by bishops who have forgotten Christ’s many controversies.


  • Sanctimony Incarnate: Glendon Declines Notre Dame’s Laetare Medal

    The University of Notre Dame’s Observer has the news:

    Mary Ann Glendon declined acceptance of the University’s Laetare Medal in a letter to University President Fr. John Jenkins Monday, saying she was “dismayed” upon hearing Notre Dame is conferring an honorary degree upon President Barack Obama.

    Her decision marks the first time the award has been accepted and then declined, according to Julie Flory, a University spokesperson.

    In the letter, which was printed on “First Things,” an online journal about religion, culture and public life, Glendon said she was “profoundly moved” when she was selected to receive the Laetare Medal.

    This is sanctimony incarnate.  Where were all of these pious Catholics when Torturer-in-Chief George W. Bush was awarded an honorary degree from the University of Notre Dame,  George W. Bush who started a war for oil, George W. Bush who is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis?

    I’ll tell you where they were: these “Drill-Baby-Drill” Catholics were cheering when Bush came to Notre Dame.

    As a Catholic and an alumnus of the University of Notre Dame, I offer three cheers again for Fr. Dan Jenky.  The Faculty Senate at Notre Dame supports Jenkins. The Notre Dame faculty has traditionally stood on the side of common sense, long ago expressing support for ND’s gay and lesbian students.

    The Observer editors also blew it in the lead headline for this story: “Former U.S. Ambassador to Vatican ‘dismayed’ that Notre Dame will honor pro-abortion Obama.”

    Nowhere does the story reference Glendon referring to President Obama as “pro-abortion.”  She may have said so in her letter to Jenky, but this is not a part of the story.

    Here’s a wake-up call to the right wing: President Obama is not pro-abortion.  He’s pro-choice, a political position many believe is the best avenue to bring down the abortion numbers.  I have yet to meet the politician, pro-life, pro-choice, or moderate, who is pro-abortion.  No one wants to see more abortions.  No one wants to see a woman in the position where she even considers abortion, or feels compelled to get an abortion.

    I’ll pray for Ms. Glendon, but make no mistake: this is pure, old-fashioned political grandstanding, a ploy of movement conservatives.

    Maybe Glendon just wants to run for office.