Recently the federal Department of Human Services issued proposed rules that would protect the conscience rights of health-care workers in facilities that receive federal funding. Simply put, it means that a hospital or other facility that receives a federal grant could not force a doctor, nurse or other worker to perform an abortion or sterilization if that would conflict with the worker’s moral convictions.
Planned Parenthood and other abortion advocates are telling their supporters that this is a “radical” gift from the Bush administration to pro-life supporters, but that just isn’t true. Since 1973, federal law has consistently protected pro-life health-care workers from reprisals such as termination and de-certification when they act on their beliefs. The proposed rule simply enforces what has been the sense of Congress for the past 35 years. It’s simply false to suggest, as Planned Parenthood has, that the Bush administration is inserting politics into the exam room.
These regulations aren’t pleasing to the pro-abortion crowd, but they are a matter of common sense – and that’s why they should be approved in September.