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USCCB urges senators to support Conscience Protection Act

February 15, 2017

The chairmen of two committees of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops have called upon senators to pass the Conscience Protection Act of 2017 (S. 301), sponsored by Sen. James Lankford (R-OK).

The House of Representatives passed an identical bill last year by a 245-182 margin.

“The need for clarification of federal law cannot be doubted,” Cardinal Timothy Dolan and Archbishop William Lori said in a recent letter to senators. “While existing federal laws already protect conscientious objection to abortion in theory, this protection has not proved effective in practice.”

“These laws can only be enforced by complaint to the Office for Civil Rights at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which—despite repeated violations—has refused to fully enforce these laws,” the prelates continued. “The Conscience Protection Act will address the deficiencies that block effective enforcement of existing laws, most notably by establishing a private right of action allowing victims of discrimination to defend their own rights in court.”


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  • Posted by: unum - Feb. 16, 2017 11:59 AM ET USA

    Finally ... a political move that makes sense for the U.S. Church.

  • Posted by: Gregory108 - Feb. 16, 2017 4:28 AM ET USA

    As they lambaste the administration for trying to protect the American people and integrity of the American nation from outside attack, may the USCCB recall that the ONLY reason they have for hope in being heard is that the candidate with the immigrant, minority and the environment "gap" won. Had the other candidate won,we'd be increasing abortion spending and eliminating the "girl" and "boy" signs from school bathrooms and dressing rooms. Maybe the election was God's answer to our "Fortnights!"