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Public Statements

Providing For Consideration Of H.R. 3081, Department Of State, Foreign Operations, And Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2010

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. SMITH of New Jersey. I thank my good friend for yielding.

Mr. Speaker, last night, Mr. Stupak and I respectfully requested that an amendment reinstating the Mexico City Policy be made in order so that the full House would have the opportunity to vote up or down on this critically important issue.

This year's Foreign Ops Appropriations bill increases population control funding by a whopping 40 percent over the 2008 levels to a record $648 million. Our amendment would simply ensure that this huge allocation of taxpayer grant money not be awarded to foreign nongovernmental organizations that perform abortions on demand or lobby for abortion on demand in developing countries.

Today, most African and Latin countries protect the lives of their unborn children, and the real threat to those laws and policies are coming from the United States and European nongovernmental organizations and the money behind them.

Indeed, prior to January, Mr. Speaker, the pro-life Mexico City Policy guaranteed that unborn children in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and elsewhere not be put at risk of death by the NGOs that we fund.

Every human life is precious, Mr. Speaker, and sacred and worthy of respect. No one, no one is expendable. Thus, family planning funds and the NGOs that they empower cannot be allowed to be the Trojan Horse for a global abortion industry.

On an encouraging note, Americans agree with our efforts to reinstate the Mexico City Policy. The Gallup Poll recently found by a margin of 2-1, 65 percent to 35 percent, Americans oppose President Obama's Executive order reversing the Mexico City Policy. They support his other Executive orders, but not that one.

Another Gallup Poll found that, for the first time, 51 percent to 42 percent, Americans are identifying as pro-life. Ultrasound technology--the window to the womb--is finally shattering the myth that an unborn child is somehow not a person.

Mr. Speaker, stripped of its many euphemisms, abortion is violence against children and often harms women emotionally and psychologically and physically. Abortion methods either dismember the fragile body of a baby to death or poisons the infant or chemically induces premature labor, leaving the immature child unable to cope with his or her new environment.

You know, in Congress we often speak and enact laws and policies designed to reduce infant mortality, and that's a wonderful and necessary goal. Can we not see or appreciate or understand that abortion is infant mortality?

An unborn child's immaturity and dependence should in no way mitigate, negate, or nullify an unborn child's inherent humanity. Human rights ought to be about inclusion, not exclusion, especially of the weakest and the most vulnerable.

Finally, can we not see or appreciate or understand that birth is an event and not the beginning of a child's life? And the stunning breakthroughs over the last three decades in treating unborn children who are diagnosed with diseases or disabilities only brings into sharp focus that the child in the womb must be regarded as a patient in need of benign and compassionate interventions. Not poison shots or razor-sharp curettes that kill, but medicines and procedures that cure.

The Mexico City Policy holds children harmless in our family planning programs throughout the world. Tragically, the rule before us precludes so much as a vote on the Mexico City Policy.

Mr. Speaker, I truly believe that the right to life is the most fundamental human right issue on Earth. Unfortunately, abortion and the promotion of abortion is the only violation of that basic human right that has the audacity to call itself a right.

I therefore will be voting ``no'' on the rule as well as the underlying bill.

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Mr. SMITH of New Jersey. I'm sure it was unwitting, but my friend from the other side of the isle misspoke. Just to make very clear, the population account, the money that was allocated in FY 2008, was approximately $460 million. It is now at $648 million. That is approximately a 40 percent increase. And then other moneys potentially could be going to these foreign nongovernmental organizations that promote abortion as well, like Planned Parenthood, Marie Stopes International, and others. So we have a very serious problem. They are American surrogates in foreign countries. They speak for us. They certainly don't speak and act for millions of pro-life Americans.

Yes, do family planning. Our amendment would leave that in tact. It would not touch the amount of money for family planning. We ought argue that abortion is not family planning and has no legitimate place in any compassionate program of health care. It is the killing of an unborn child.

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