Obama set to name pro-abortion health secretary
3 March 2009
A pro-abortion governor is set to be President Obama's health secretary. Ms Kathleen Sebelius, governor of Kansas, was last year asked by Most Rev Joseph Naumann, Archbishop of Kansas City, not to go to communion until she publicly repented of her anti-life views. The Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute says she is a friend of Dr George Tiller who has performed partial birth abortions. The Christian Defense Coalition said the nomination confirmed that Mr Obama was the 'abortion president'. Operation Rescue says it will oppose her confirmation by the senate. [Catholic News Agency, 28 February] SPUC's John Smeaton said: "Speaking as a Catholic, I feel that there is a very real danger for the church if it were to allow pro-abortion Catholics in public life to go unchallenged. Such inaction would imply that opposition to legalised abortion and other anti-life legislation was not terribly important, and that it was more important for the church to be, as it were, a respectable part of the 'right to choose' state - expressing opposition to abortion, certainly, but not in such a way as to upset the apple cart." [John Smeaton, 2 March] Senator Sam Brownback, who is pro-life, has congratulated Ms Sebelius. [Catholic News Agency, 2 March] This is puzzling, though it could be because he represents the state which she governs.
SPUC's leadership is calling on people in the UK to boycott a national fundraising event because money which it raises is used to support the legalisation of abortion overseas, including in Africa. The Comic Relief organisation has stated that it does not support abortion, yet funds from its Red Nose Day have gone to the pro-abortion African Women's Development Fund and to Oxfam.
A senator who is also an obstetrician and gynaecologist says many American medics will risk prison rather than go against their consciences. Mr Tom Coburn was speaking as it is increasingly expected that President Obama will reverse his predecessor's measure which allows health workers and institutions to opt out of unethical procedures. [Catholic News Agency, 2 March]
A man in Italy who campaigned for 10 years for his daughter to be starved to death is being investigated for voluntary homicide, along with 13 others. Miss Eluana Englaro died at the La Quieta clinic, Friuli, on 9 February and prosecutors are investigating Mr Beppino Englaro, an anaesthetist and 12 nurses after the Verità e Vita group complained. A draft law in the senate would make food and hydration mandatory. [LifeSiteNews, 2 March]
Socialists in Mexico are failing in their attempts to extend legalised abortion from the capital to the country's 31 states. Since 2007 abortion has been available on demand in Mexico City up to 12 weeks' gestation. The Party of the Democratic Revolution has been unsuccessful even in some states that it governs. [LifeSiteNews, 2 March]
A woman in north-west England refused cancer treatment for the sake of her unborn twins. Mrs Rachel Crossland said: "there was no way I could deal with getting rid of my babies and having to then fight cancer." She received therapy after the babies were delivered by caesarean. [Daily Mail, 2 March]
A clinic in Melbourne, Australia, allegedly lost a human embryo whose 40-year-old mother says it was her last. The un-named woman is seeking damages through the courts. [Daily Mail, 28 February]
Vitamin B12 prevents neural tube defects in the unborn, according to research on Irish women described in the Pediatrics journal. [Reuters, 2 March]