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Everybody's Healthcare Is Threatened by Catholic Bishops' Interference
Date:12/2/2009

Ad in Today's Washington Post Highlights Dangers

WASHINGTON, Dec. 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- If the Catholic bishops have their way, many medical treatments and preventative measures we take for granted may be under threat. The pressure that the US bishops have brought to bear on the debate over healthcare reform has been widely reported. An ad in this morning's Washington Post warns of the likely impact if that pressure to influence healthcare policy is not curtailed.

Jon O'Brien, president of Catholics for Choice, said, "The Catholic bishops used their political clout to influence politicians to vote for the Stupak-Pitts amendment, which would further restrict access to abortion for millions of women in the healthcare reform bill that passed the House. As Senators debate their version of the bill, they should remember that the 200 US bishops who oversee dioceses do not represent the views of all Catholics, nor even a majority. In fact, the majority of Catholics do not want their bishops to be involved in this political process at all."

A recent poll by Catholics for Choice found that 68 percent of Catholic voters in the US disapprove of US bishops saying that all Catholics should oppose the entire healthcare reform plan if it includes coverage for abortion and 56 percent think the bishops should not take a position on healthcare reform legislation in Congress. In fact, only a small minority of Catholics, fewer than 15 percent, are in line with the bishops in believing that all abortion should be banned. The rest can see circumstances in which legal abortion is an acceptable, even essential, aspect of health care. (The full results of the poll are available on our Web site.)

O'Brien continued, "The bishops claim to speak on behalf of Ca
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SOURCE Catholics for Choice
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