Wisconsin Family Action supports the 3 bills the State Assembly Moved Forward
MADISON — “We moved the pro-life, pro-liberty ball forward yesterday in Wisconsin,” says Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action.
The State Assembly yesterday passed three bills that Wisconsin Family Action supported. Among the bills was Senate Bill 206, known as Sonya’s Law. This bill requires that a woman seeking an abortion in Wisconsin have an ultrasound prior to the abortion.
Appling explains, “Sonya’s Law is about making sure women in a crisis situation are fully informed about the baby they are carrying before they take the final step in what is nearly always an irreversible decision.”
An unofficial survey of various places around Wisconsin that offer free ultrasounds to pregnant women shows that an abdominal ultrasound is readily available.
Senate Bill was authored by Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) and Representative Pat Strachota (R-West Bend) and passed on party line votes in both the Senate and the Assembly. The bill is awaiting gubernatorial action.
The Assembly also took up Assembly Bill 216 or the “Conscience bill,” authored by Representative André Jacque (R-De Pere) and Senator Glenn Grothman (R-West Bend). This bill restores religious freedom protection for certain religious institutions that want to provide insurance coverage that does not include abortion and/or contraception. Current law requires any insurance company to provide an insurance plan that includes abortion and contraception, with no religious exemption. This bill also prohibits taxpayer funds from paying for abortions for state/public employees.
Assembly Bill 217, authored by Senator Joe Leibham (R-Sheboygan) and Representative Steve Kestell (R-Elkhart Lake) prohibits sex-selective abortions in Wisconsin, meaning a woman cannot have an abortion simply because she is not happy with the sex of the baby.
Both Assembly Bill 216 and Assembly Bill 217 passed on party-line votes in the Assembly. The Senate has had public hearings on both bills, but neither bill has been scheduled for a vote.
“Anytime we protect human life and respect religious freedom in our state legislature, it’s a good day for Wisconsin,” noted Appling.
Wisconsin Family Action testified in support of two pro-life bills on Wednesday, May 29. The Assembly Committee on Health held a public hearing on AB 216 and AB 217. Our friends at Wisconsin Right To Life were the lead pro-life group working on these bills.
AB 216, authored by Rep. André Jacque (R-De Pere) and Sen. Glenn Grothman (R-West Bend), protects taxpayers from paying for abortions for public employees and also establishes some protections for religious organizations in being able to offer health insurance that does not include abortion or contraception, if they elect not to do so based on their religious beliefs.
AB 217, authored by Rep. Steve Kestell (R-Elkhart Lake) and Sen. Joe Leibham (R-Sheboygan) bans and criminalizes sex-selective abortion in Wisconsin. It was more than a little interesting to watch the liberal representatives and pro-abortion groups defend their position against this bill.
Several media outlets reported on the hearing:
Along with numerous other pro-religious freedom organizations, Wisconsin Family Action has signed the letter to the U.S. House of Representatives urging the passage of the Health Care Conscience Rights Act (HCCRA) introduced by U.S. Rep. Diane Black (R-TN). Read this breaking press release from our friends at Family Research Council:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 5, 2013
CONTACT: J.P. Duffy or Darin Miller, (866) FRC-NEWS or (866) 372-6397
FRC Urges Congress to Pass Health Care Conscience Rights Act
March 05, 2013
NASHVILLE, TN – Family Research Council (FRC) hosted a news conference at the National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) annual convention in Nashville, Tennessee today to discuss the need for conscience protections for religious business owners and individuals from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services mandate on abortion-causing drugs, sterilizations and contraceptives. FRC President Tony Perkins and FRC Executive Vice President Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jerry Boykin were joined by Janet Parshall, radio host for Moody Radio, Bishop Harry Jackson, Jr. of Hope Christian Church and Dr. Richard Land, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), to discuss the HHS mandate that employers cover abortion-causing drugs, sterilizations and contraceptives in their health insurance plans, even if those employers have religious convictions against such coverage.
During the press conference, Perkins expressed support for the Health Care Conscience Rights Act (HCCRA), introduced yesterday by U.S. Rep. Diane Black (R-TN) to protect the religious liberties of anyone who purchases health insurance, including non-profits, businesses and individuals, as well as providing greater protections for health care workers who refuse to participate in abortion. Rep. Black joined the press conference at NRB by video.
In a letter earlier this week FRC and other organizations urged U.S. House of Representatives leaders to include conscience protection language in the Continuing Resolution (CR) currently before Congress.
Of the conscience bill and the CR, Perkins said:
“We are disappointed that the Health Care Conscience Rights Act wasn’t placed in the Continuing Resolution, but we continue to urge Members to push for its inclusion. This bill’s language must be included in must-pass legislation to ensure that the First Amendment-guaranteed religious liberties of all Americans are protected. Failure to include it will result in thousands of religious organizations being forced to comply or face severe fines for maintaining their religious convictions.”
To hear audio of today’s press conference, click here.
To read the letter to U.S. House of Representatives leaders, click here.
Wisconsin Family Action Files Friend of Court Brief on
HHS Contraceptive Mandates
Pro-family group files with 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Grote v. Sebelius
MADISON— Wisconsin Family Action late yesterday filed a friend of the court brief in Grote v. Sebelius, a case in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit dealing with the federal abortion pill mandate.
This federal mandate requires that employee health plans, with some limited exceptions, include FDA-approved contraception, even “contraception” that can result in the death of a human embryo. Many religious business owners oppose being forced to facilitate contraception—particularly abortifacients—that are contrary to their religious conscience.
The government has been arguing vigorously that corporations don’t have the right to exercise religion.
Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action, notes, “WFA lays out in this brief the legal and philosophical reasons supporting the position that First Amendment religious liberty is not just for purely religious organizations but is also for for-profit corporations run by people who have closely held religious beliefs. The federal government should not be violating the religious freedom of these business owners by mandating that they purchase health insurance that includes abortifacient drugs and even sterilization procedures for their employees.”
Read the brief here.
Today, Wisconsin Family Action (WFA) filed a “friend of the court” brief with the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in the lawsuit Grote Industries v. Sebelius. WFA argues that First Amendment religious liberty is not just for purely religious organizations but is also for for-profit corporations run by people who have closely held religious beliefs. The federal government should not be violating the religious freedom of these business owners by mandating that they purchase health insurance for their employees that includes abortifacient drugs & sterilization procedures.
Read the court document HERE.
Read more about Grote Industries v Sebelius on the Alliance Defending Freedom Fact Page HERE.
Shop in-store or on-line…
Read more HERE
HOBBY LOBBY LEADS THE FIGHT FOR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY
As of yesterday, January 1, 2013, the New Year is bringing forth tumult instead of happiness for Christian-owned Hobby Lobby corporation. In a steadfast fight for religious freedom, Hobby Lobby announced earlier this year that it cannot in good conscience comply with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) coercive “preventive services” mandate, which forces healthcare providers to provide abortifacients and contraceptives. The Supreme Court denied Hobby Lobby’s request for an injunction while its lawsuit in pursuit of a religious exemption makes its way through the courts.
Hobby Lobby and its owners, David and Barbara Green, now run the risk of being subjected to the HHS mandate’s fines of UP TO $1.3 MILLION PER DAY (effective yesterday, January 1, 2013).
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
Send a note to the Green’s to lend your support and encouragement. Click HERE to send a “thank you” note to the Green family via The Becket Fund who is representing the family in their lawsuit.
Take part in SUPPORT HOBBY LOBBY DAY on SATURDAY, JANUARY 5. Patronize your local HOBBY LOBBY store in person or on line. Make a purchase to show your support for the courageous steps taken by the Green family who now face daily fines for their biblical stance against the provision of the “morning after pill” and other abortifacients to their employees.
Locate your local Hobby Lobby store HERE.
Shop on-line HERE.
Pray for the Green family as they boldly stand for biblical principles and lead the way for religious freedom in the workplace.
BE KIND AND….SHARE THIS INFORMATION WITH EVERYONE YOU KNOW — TWEET, FACEBOOK, EMAIL.
It’s been quite a journey this 2012 Election. Through it all, you have stood with Wisconsin Family Action (WFA). Many of you have made phone calls, knocked on doors, handed out literature, contacted your church, attended events, developed your list of 10, prayed, financially invested in WFA and, importantly, voted.
We are so very grateful for everything you have done. Thank you–a thousand times, thank you. We could not have had the largest election effort this organization has ever undertaken without you. Regardless of the outcome of the election, please know you really have made a difference. Later we will let you know the breadth of what you were a part of; we think you’ll be impressed and encouraged.
- the American people re-elected a president who has consistently been against Christian principles and values and who seems to have no real regard for or understanding of true freedom.
- Three states (Maine, Maryland, Washington) legalized so-called same-sex “marriage,”
- One state (Minnesota) defeated an amendment that would have protected traditional one-man/one-woman marriage, and
- Two states (Colorado, Washington) legalized “recreational” marijuana.
You and many other pro-family, pro-life, pro-liberty citizens cast your votes in this election for those state-level candidates who truly align with your values and beliefs, and we see this reflected in the election of 33 out of the 44 Wisconsin Family Action PAC (WFA-PAC) endorsed state-level candidates. These are strong choices that will uphold the sanctity of life, protect our Constitutional freedoms, and work towards helping families become stronger and independent of government.
These victories are part of holding a conservative majority in our state Assembly (60 Republicans; 39 Democrats) and regaining a conservative majority in the state Senate (17 Republicans; 15 Democrats, with one vacancy in a very conservative district that will be filled in a special election, which means ultimately the split will be 18 Republicans and 15 Democrats.)
Regardless of the outcome of any of the elections, we know that God is still God and that He is still in control–of everything, even of those who were elected who defy Him and His truth. In the midst of questions and some disappointment about yesterday, we at WFA have a calmness and a sure hope in the God we serve. We sincerely hope that is true for you, as well.
Yesterday reminds us we have much work to do in Wisconsin and in America. WFA is up to the task, in part because we know friends such as you are standing with us–and also because we know our work of strengthening and preserving marriage, family, life and liberty is more important now than ever. We are not discouraged; we are already getting ready for the next round!
In addition, we are encouraged because we know that yesterday–
YOUR VOICE said -
You and tens of thousands of other Wisconsin families value…
- Marriage as God ordained it
- Traditional families
- Religious liberty
You and tens of thousands of other Wisconsin families support…
- Strong candidates that share your core beliefs and Christian principles.
- Your ability to exercise a Christian voice in the polling place.
- The encouragement of job growth in Wisconsin, and across the nation.
- Independence from government and the promotion of a strong family unit.
- The protection of innocent life.
- The preservation of individual liberties.