Gov. Walker &
Sen. Bramble Call for Taxpayer Funding of Euthanasia
(Alert for 5/31/04)
act or practice of ending the life of an individual suffering
from a terminal illness or an incurable condition." — The
American Heritage College Dictionary, third edition
Summary: Gov. Olene Walker and many Utah legislators are
gearing up for an "emergency" legislative session to weaken
last session’s abortion law, outlawing taxpayer funding of
abortion-on-demand. Learn why they are sinking to new depths
in their hypocrisy and disdain for life and the unborn, and
what you can do about it.
1. What Does this
Abortion Law Actually Do?
Abortions Performed in Utah at Taxpayer
SB 68 a Weaker Version of Colorado Law
2. Proponents of Government-Subsidized Abortion
3. Officials Again Prove Hypocrisy by Calling for
4. The More Consistent Agenda of SB 68’s Sponsor,
Sen. Curt Bramble
5. Move Over Jack Kevorkian: Officials Move to
Redefine Life & Worth
6. TAKE ACTION!
1. What Does this Abortion Law Actually Do?
Accountability Utah volunteers
were heavily involved in the drafting of, and amendments to,
Bill 68 (Substitute 3). SB 68 prohibits state and
political subdivisions from using public funds for the
performance of an abortion except in certain circumstances
such as rape, incest, and life of the mother. It also provides
penalties (Class B Misdemeanor and termination of government
employment) for any government employee who knowingly
authorizes the use of public funds for frivolous abortions.
(Note: C. Everett
Koop, M.D., former U.S. Surgeon General, stated: "Protection
of the life of the mother as an excuse for an abortion is a
smoke screen. In my 36 years of pediatric surgery, I have
never known of one instance where the child had to be aborted
to save the mother's life. If toward the end of the
pregnancy complications arise that threaten the mother's
health, the doctor will induce labor or perform a Caesarean
section. His intention is to save the life of both the mother
and the baby. The baby's life is never willfully destroyed
because the mother's life is in danger.")
The basic arguments in support
of this bill are these:
(1) It is immoral to forcibly
seize resources from some citizens to subsidize the health
care of others.
(2) Elective abortions are
particularly egregious because many taxpayers believe them
to constitute murder or at least disregard for the processes
Additional Note: SB 68
was extremely effective at ending abortions in Utah hospitals.
According to the Salt Lake Tribune:
"The law, which took effect
May 3, cuts off public funding to any agency that performs
abortions except in cases of rape, incest or severe damage
to a 'major bodily function' of the mother. Fearing the loss
of Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program
reimbursements, Utah hospitals have stopped performing the
curbs might be eased," Rebecca Walsh, Salt Lake
Tribune, May 27, 2004.
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Abortions Performed in
Utah at Taxpayer Expense
According to Planned
Parenthood's own statistics, in 2001 alone, 3,289 abortions
were performed in Utah. Only 30 resulted from rape and 6 were
supposedly performed to protect the "life of the mother."
Contrary to popular myth,
many of those abortions were directly or indirectly paid for
by Utah taxpayers. While Planned Parenthood does not
directly perform abortions in Utah, it does work closely with
state-licensed hospitals and so-called "clinics" that do
perform and/or promote abortions. Many of these state-licensed
facilities receive direct and/or indirect taxpayer funding via
the State of Utah's public employee health insurance plan,
special exemptions, and almost certainly government grants.
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SB 68 a Weaker Version of
SB 68 does not prohibit
abortions, but merely requires them to be done through solely
private means. SB 68 is a weaker version of Colorado’s
successful 1984 statewide initiative, where voters
overwhelmingly passed a constitutional amendment to eliminate
any direct or indirect funding for abortion on demand.
Colorado initiative language is as follows:
Section 50. Public funding of
No public funds shall be used by the State of Colorado, its
agencies or political subdivisions to pay or otherwise
reimburse, either directly or indirectly, any person, agency
or facility for the performance of any induced abortion,
PROVIDED HOWEVER, that the General Assembly, by specific
bill, may authorize and appropriate funds to be used for
those medical services necessary to prevent the death of
either a pregnant woman or her unborn child under
circumstances where every reasonable effort is made to
preserve the life of each.
Adopted by the People
November 6, 1984 — Effective upon proclamation of the
Governor, January 14, 1985. (For the text of the initiated
measure and the votes cast thereon, see L. 85, p. 1792.)
Colorado Governor Bill Owens
made certain through comprehensive audits and investigations
that this initiative is enforced. Because of this language and
Gov. Owen’s actions, abortions in Colorado have seen a
amendment was challenged, however, in the early 1990's. In the
case of Hern v. Beye, 57 F.3d 906 (10th Cir. 1995),
Colorado's abortion funding restriction was found to violate
federal Medicaid law because it denies funding to
Medicaid-eligible women seeking abortions to end pregnancies
that are the result of rape or incest. The Tenth Circuit Court
of Appeals found that as long as Colorado continues to
participate in Medicaid, the state is enjoined from denying
Medicaid funding for abortions to qualified women whose
pregnancies are the result of incest or rape. The case of
Hern v. Beye, therefore, qualifies Colorado's
constitutional provision in order that the state may maintain
its standing as a participant in the Medicaid program.
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2. Proponents of Government-Subsidized Abortion React
Proponents of weakening SB 68
base their position on the belief that individuals and
organizations are entitled to receive government-subsidized
health care. They argue that families with unborn who are dead
in the womb or who have terminal impairment or illness are
being denied their inalienable right to government funding.
They argue that it is an unnecessary inconvenience to be
forced to seek an elective abortion in a facility that does
not receive direct or indirect government funds for such
Sen. Curt Bramble, sponsor of SB
68, who has now joined the call for amending the new law,
"A woman with fatal fetal
deformities who can't afford to pay — the state would be
barred from providing any funding" [if the law isn't
bill likely to be on agenda,” Josh Loftin & Amy Joi
Bryson, Deseret News, May 28, 2004.
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3. Officials Again Prove Hypocrisy by Calling for Emergency
As we reported in our
2004 Performance Report, for years, the senate has
filibustered and killed anti-infanticide bills. In the 2003
legislative session, the senate broke the camel’s back by
collaboratively filibustering a bill to ban taxpayer funding
of abortion on demand (HB 123 S4). Despite citizen outcry and
anger, not one senator would stand up and fight for the
unborn, or take any meaningful action. Senator Parley
"We would have only had 6 or 7
votes [in the Senate]."
Over the past year, citizens
have appropriately and relentlessly confronted each and every
senator for his or her cowardice and contempt. Citizens also
contacted Governor Leavitt and then Governor Walker, demanding
that they hold an emergency session to correct the inaction of
the Utah Senate. Protests were held and a resolution at the
2003 GOP party convention calling for a special session was
filed (but stifled by GOP party leaders). Despite these
efforts, taxpayer-funded murder was not deemed to be an
emergency — Governors Leavitt and Walker called no special
In desperate fear for their
political careers, however, senators sailed
through the entire legislature this session (21-7 in the
senate and 57-13-5 in the house). Again, this bill was even
tougher than the bill in 2003 (HB 123 S6).
Unfortunately, in the precious
time it took to thrash senators for their vulgar obstruction,
over 4,000 infants have been murdered in Utah via
“therapeutic” or “elective” abortions.
And, again, many of those abortions were directly or
indirectly paid for by Utah taxpayers.
For more information, see
our report, "How
Anti-Infanticide Bills Die in a 'Pro-Life' Senate: A Summary
of Facts & Eyewitness Accounts".
Now that a few individuals are
inconvenienced by having to go to other facilities to obtain
elective abortions, the Governor and legislature are falling
over themselves to amend the law. Never mind the thousands of
infants whose lives were ended on a yearly basis prior to the
enactment of SB 68.
Gov. Walker has even sought
input from the very hospitals and agencies that receive
government subsidies for guidance on the most effective way to
weaken this new law. Is it coincidence that she is pursuing
this action now that her gubernatorial campaign has been
In the 2003 session, which was
not an election year, the unborn had no voice in the Utah
senate. Is it also coincidence that this session — an election
year — senators publicly shed tears and relayed
heart-wrenching experiences regarding the sanctity of infants?
It is coincidence that many Senate Democrats fell over
themselves to vote for the final passage of this bill?
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4. The More Consistent Agenda of SB 68’s Sponsor, Sen. Curt
The sponsor of SB 68, Sen. Curt
Bramble, a self-proclaimed supporter of the unborn, has told
the media that he now supports amending the law. An analysis
of Bramble’s past behavior, however, is not at all consistent
with that of an advocate for unborn life.
Like many other senators,
Bramble was approached by upset citizens on the last night of
the session. According to citizen Terry Trease, at a critical
the following interaction occurred:
"Many of us went to the House
side and started writing notes to Rep. Curtis requesting
that he move HB 123 and HB 109 [a bill requiring informed
consent before administering shock treatment] back up to the
top of the board. At this time Sen. Curt Bramble came by and
asked what bill we were concerned about. We told him what
had happened. He said he was the Senate sponsor of HB 123
and HB 109 and requested I come with him to find out what
was going on. The middle door to the senate floor was open,
so we went and looked at the Senate board to find the
positions. Sen. Bramble said one of his bills was up and
he had to address it. He went away, and never returned."
Bramble told citizen Daniel
Newby, "Don't worry. The abortion bills will be heard." When
asked by activist Greg Carlisle if the senate would hear the
anti-infanticide bills before the session ended, however,
Bramble replied by e-mail:
"It depends on how fast the
In fact, Bramble took no
meaningful action to ensure that the HB 123 was heard. He has
since publicly made the fantastic claim that he did not even
know whether he, or former senator Bill Wright, was the actual
senate sponsor of HB 123 S6 until after the session was over.
Of additional note is that the
Bramble family made a $100 campaign donation to Senate
Democrat Minority Leader Ron Allen’s re-election campaign.
Sen. Allen was instrumental in killing time and otherwise
filibustering HB 123.
(For more information,
Civility Utah article.)
Past behavior indicates the
likelihood that Bramble was embarrassed into sponsoring SB 68
to attempt to repair the growing perception among citizens
that he quietly pursues the pro-abortion agenda. It is
laughable to argue that Bramble’s behavior is indicative of an
advocate for the unborn.
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5. Move Over Jack Kevorkian: Officials Move to Redefine Life &
Already, pro-abortion champions
like Rep. Sheryl Allen (Republican), who pushed many
amendments to gut SB 68, are again on the warpath. According
Salt Lake Tribune,
"…Senator [Curt Bramble] says
he is willing to tweak the so-called health exception for
mothers and include an exception for fetal 'anomalies'… Sen.
Sheryl Allen proposed an amendment on the House floor in
February allowing an exception for fetal defects 'generally
considered to be lethal within 72 hours'… [Bramble] says he
supported Allen's amendment."
Should life now be defined by
how long a doctor believes an infant can survive outside of
the womb? If this is the case,
convicted murderer and euthanasia practitioner Jack Kevorkian
did not go far enough: Taxpayers should be forced to fund
euthanasia for children and adults with "defects generally
considered to be lethal within 72 hours"! In addition,
doctors are frequently inaccurate in their predictions of the
life span of terminally ill patients. What if they are wrong?
And what will prevent legislators from setting the limit
beyond 72 hours next year?
The pro-abortion movement has
sought to gradually reduce the value of a human being by
redefining life, and therefore worth, to the moment of birth
(or the moment that the entire infant's body leaves the
mother’s body). Now, thanks to Republicans like Olene
Walker and Curt Bramble, they have the opportunity to redefine
life and worth to 72 hours BEYOND BIRTH. Infants with
"anomalies" (as Sen. Bramble put it), or the imperfections of
sick and ailing human beings, may soon be subject to
The agenda that can move
otherwise resistant officials to call an emergency session is
simple: There exists opportunity to appease special interests,
in this case by forcing citizens to again participate in the
act of murder.
Officials like Sen. Bramble
offer another example of the horrors of combining
short-sightedness and stupidity with the power of law. These
officials now threaten to put infants on the same footing as
those in China, where infants are slaughtered after birth for
imperfections or because the government determined that the
family already had their allotment of children.
Sound far-fetched? According to
a recent Drudge Report article, titled, "Abortion
Soars in Quest for Perfect Babies":
Those with conditions that can
usually be corrected medically — such as deformed feet and
cleft lips and palates — are instead being terminated.
And the number of abortions of
Down's syndrome babies now outstrips live births, despite
the fact that those with the condition can live a long and
fulfilling life. As screening techniques improve, the trend
is likely to grow — horrifying pro-life campaigners.
'These figures are symptomatic
of a eugenic trend of the consumerist society hell-bent on
obliterating deformity — and at what cost to its own
humanity?' said ethicist Jacqueline Laing, of London
Metropolitan University. 'We are obliterating the
willingness of people to accept disability. Babies are
required to fit a description of normality before they are
allowed to be born.'
The figures for 2002 — the
latest available — from the Office for National Statistics
show more women than ever are choosing to terminate babies
with potential handicaps, with such abortions rising 8 per
cent in a year.
It has renewed fears that
strict laws on termination due to disabilities are being
flouted by doctors.
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6. TAKE ACTION!
The lives of the unborn again
stand in the balance. We strongly recommend that you
immediately take the following action:
1. Call (and, if possible,
fax and email) the following officials:
Tell them to publicly reject any
effort to weaken the current law that prohibits direct or
indirect taxpayer funding of abortion. Tell them to motivate
their colleagues to do the same. Inform us of any
responses you receive at
2. Forward this message
to your family, friends, and any activists you know. Encourage
them to voice their concerns and get involved. Don't wait
until the legislature forces you to again fund infanticide!
3. Monitor this site for
new and updated information and join our alert list by
e-mailing us at
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recipe: Take our information and opinion, research their
information and opinion (if it is available), and then examine
the law and draw your own conclusions. For more information on
similar issues, see the Infanticide section of our Issues &
If you have comments or suggestions, please
email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.