Massachusetts pastors urged Gov. Charlie Baker on Tuesday to veto legislation that would legalize abortions through all nine months and allow young teens to get abortions without a parent’s knowledge.
In the letter, signed by more than 300 pastors from across the state, the religious leaders expressed concern about the renewed push to expand the killing of unborn babies in abortions in Massachusetts.
“In 2019 alone, there were 18,593 abortions performed in the Bay State. How much more ‘accessible’ does the murder of unborn children need to be?” they asked. “Abortion ends the life of a human child and puts the physical, mental and emotional health of women, most especially young women, at risk.” They urged Baker, a pro-abortion Republican, to veto the bill if it reaches his desk.
The ROE Act has languished in committee for more than a year; but, this week, news broke that lawmakers are trying to revive the radical pro-abortion bill in the form of an amendment to the annual budget. Amendment 759 to House Bill 5150 is scheduled for debate this week.
The ROE Act would eliminate basically all regulations and restrictions on abortion in Massachusetts. It would allow abortions through all nine months of pregnancy, even if there is no physical threat to the mother’s life, and could put young sexual abuse victims at greater risk by eliminating the state parental consent requirement. It also would allow non-doctors to do abortions.
Massachusetts Citizens for Life said the bill allows for “passive infanticide” by eliminating a requirement to provide medical care to a baby who is born alive after an abortion.
The new budget amendment appears to be strategic, a way Democrat politicians hope to pass the legislation quickly to appease pro-abortion lobbying groups before too many unhappy voters find out exactly what the amendment does.
But the pastors and state pro-life groups are raising awareness and urging people to voice their opposition to the anti-life proposal. They criticized the “shocking and callous disregard for human life” in the legislation and its removal of parental involvement in the lives of their children.
“The killing of a human being is not healthcare. Healthcare involves medical, physical, and psychological treatment and services that sustain and improve life, not extinguish it,” the pastors wrote.
They told Baker that they are praying for him as well as for “the poor, the downtrodden, the defenseless and the least among us,” including babies in their mothers’ wombs.
“As we approach the season of Advent, we remember that John the Baptist reacted in his mother’s womb when greeted by Mary, who was also pregnant at the time with our Lord. We are dismayed to learn that, once again, over 18,000 children, our neighbors, had their lives brutally cut short while in their mother’s womb last year in Massachusetts,” the pastors continued.
“You have the power, the duty, to stop this legislation from becoming law in Massachusetts, and we urge you to do so,” the pastors told Baker.
Meanwhile, pro-abortion groups are lobbying for the legislation, including Planned Parenthood, NARAL and the American Civil Liberties Union.
“When Massachusetts voters reelected every incumbent who supported the ROE Act and also voted out anti-abortion legislators, they made it clear that they want state lawmakers to remove medically unnecessary barriers to abortion care,” they said in a joint statement.
However, polls and the long delay on the ROE Act suggest the legislation is not popular. Polls consistently show that Americans oppose late-term abortions and support parental consent requirements for minors.
A recent poll by Susan B. Anthony List found strong opposition to the Massachusetts legislation. According to the poll, 62 percent of Massachusetts voters oppose late-term abortions, including 49 percent of Democrat and 66 percent of independent voters. The same number, 62 percent, also supports the current state law requiring parental consent before a girl under 18 has an abortion.
Similar legislation passed in New York, Illinois, Vermont and Rhode Island last year, prompting massive outrage. Another pro-abortion bill narrowly failed in New Mexico because of strong public opposition.
In Massachusetts, abortion activists renewed their demands to pass the legislation after U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died and conservative Justice Amy Coney Barrett replaced her. The Supreme Court has a 6-3 conservative majority, and pro-life advocates hope and abortion activists fear the justices may restore protections to unborn babies.