LIPINSKI, ROSKAM, HULTGREN WARN AGAINST ILLINOIS’ PROPOSAL TO OPPRESS FREE EXERCISE OF RELIGION
SPRINGFIELD, IL – A bill that would force pro-life health care providers to promote and participate in abortion, SB 1564, passed the Illinois Senate this week, and now moves to the House. The bill would also violate federal law, a bipartisan letter from Members of the federal Illinois delegation says.
Congressional members of the Illinois delegation Peter Roskam, Dan Lipinski and Randy Hultgren say in the letter that SB 1564 does more than “gut the conscience protections currently enshrined in [Illinois law].” The bill would “stand in stark contrast to the requirements of superseding federal law, including the Church Amendment, the Coats-Snowe Amendment, and the annual Hyde-Weldon Amendment.”
And it could cost medical facilities in Illinois badly-needed federal assistance. They write that “such legislation could seriously imperil funds for healthcare programs, including reimbursements under Medicare and Medicaid.”
“The right of conscience s a fundamental freedom protected under the U.S. Constitution. The Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment expressly guarantees that Americans will not be prohibited from acting under their chosen religious beliefs, stating, “Congress shall make no law…prohibiting the free exercise [of religion].”
The White House asserted in 2012 that “The President and this administration have previously expressed strong support for existing conscience protections, including those relating to health care providers.”
SB 1564 was sponsored in the Senate by Sen. Daniel Biss – Julie A. Morrison – Toi W. Hutchinson – Linda Holmes – Kimberly A. Lightford, Michael Noland, Heather A. Steans, William Delgado, Iris Y. Martinez, Jacqueline Y. Collins, Emil Jones, III, Donne E. Trotter, Mattie Hunter and Kwame Raoul.
Two Republicans – GOP leader Christine Radogno and freshman Senator Chris Nybo – supported the bill.
Illinois House member Robyn Gabel, a former Planned Parenthood director and Madigan’s lieutenant Barbara Flynn Currie are managing the bill in the Illinois House.
PLEASE CONTACT YOUR STATE REP: http://ilga.gov/house/