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Iowa Rep. Claims Life High on Congress's Agenda; Some Pro-Lifers Doubtful

By Rusty Pugh and Jenni Parker
January 31, 2005

(AgapePress) - A conservative congressman from Iowa says the Republican-controlled Congress is eager to get to work on pro-life legislation and rejects criticism that the GOP has not been aggressive on the sanctity-of-life issue.

U.S. Representative Steve King says the new conservative Congress will focus on helping women and children and finding more alternatives to abortion. However, some pro-life groups have been critical of the Republican Party's approach to passing pro-life legislation over the long term.

King is a member of the House Judiciary Committee. He says pro-life Republicans have run into judicial obstacles in their efforts to enact pro-life legislation -- roadblocks such as the partial birth abortion ban, which has yet to be heard by the Supreme Court of the United States.

"The lower courts have in three places across the country denied our legislation," the Republican congressman says, "and so now it's up to the High Court to make the final decision on that. But other than that, we've about hit the end of the things -- that I think are constructive -- that go before this configuration of the Supreme Court."

It is that current configuration that King hopes George W. Bush can change during these final four years of his presidency. The Iowa representative says the only hope the administration has for ever overturning Roe v. Wade lies there, in "the likely appointments that the President will have on the Supreme Court coming up in this term."

One to three is generally the number of justices that are believed likely to retire, and King asserts that each of those appointments is critical. "They'll have more to say," he notes, "about how this nation unfolds -- our society, our culture, our faith, our religion, and the civilization that's the United States of America -- than either the legislature or the next president. So it's critical that the President be able to confirm strict constructionists to the Supreme Court."

King says Congress is committed to helping Bush accomplish that goal. However, some pro-life conservatives have begun to question the commitment of both the President and the Republican Party to the pro-life cause. According to America First Party national chairman Dan Charles, neither the conservative party nor the Commander-in-Chief can truly be called pro-life based on their record of accomplishments.

"The GOP has controlled Congress for more than a decade," Charles points out. "Republicans have appointed 7 of the 9 sitting Supreme Court Justices. So-called 'pro-life' President George Bush is starting his second term. Yet, the killing continues."

The head of the AFP charges that Republicans merely "play politics with innocent lives at election time, while working to maintain the status quo the rest of the time."

Disturbing Abortion Trends

And according to Dr. Janet Crouse of Concerned Women for America, the status quo would be an untenable enough position for the unborn. But unfortunately, she notes, abortion trends are changing for the worse in numerous ways.

As director of CWA's Beverly LaHaye Institute, Crouse says it is gratifying to see the numbers of teen abortions dropping; however, abortions are on the rise among women age 25 and older. "What we've found," the CWA spokeswoman says, "is that teen abortions are declining and overall abortions are declining; but it looks like older women are now using abortion as a form of birth control."

Worse yet, the pro-life spokeswoman adds, it would seem that terminating pregnancy by abortion is becoming a habit with many women. "Abortions are up among women who have already had previous abortions -- some of them as many as four," she says.

Amid such disturbing trends, Crouse sees the statistics about teens as welcome news. She says it is pleasing to find that fewer young girls are choosing abortion and that teen pregnancies are down in general, both being indicators that abstinence education is working.

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