was McCain’s concession speech…really incredible…
paradoxically, better then Obama’s inauguration speech…
was McCain’s concession speech…really incredible…
paradoxically, better then Obama’s inauguration speech…
You thought you are about to choose just one president?
I’ve read this today:
PRESIDENTIAL APPOINTMENTS AFFECTING LIFE ISSUES
As the expression goes, “personnel is policy.” To have his policies carried out, a President must have like-minded individuals in key positions. When we elect a President, then, we also elect an entire army of people appointed by the President who will affect policy at all levels of government, including deciding which private groups participate in federal programs or receive federal grants.
Every President fills over 7,000 positions in the White House, federal departments and agencies, and advisory panels. This figure does not include Judicial Branch appointments. A complete list of all positions filled by presidential appointment is available in the “Plum Book,” the latest edition of which is available at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/plumbook/2004/index.html.
The following list contains some of the key appointments a President makes that can affect the Culture of Life:
Supreme Court Justices (lifetime tenure)
President Ronald Reagan appointed three and promoted Justice Rehnquist to Chief Justice.
President George H.W. Bush appointed two.
President Bill Clinton appointed two.
President George W. Bush appointed two.
Federal Circuit Court of Appeals Judges (lifetime tenure)
Ronald Reagan appointed 83
George H.W. Bush 42
Bill Clinton 66
George W. Bush 57
Federal District Court Judges (lifetime tenure)
Ronald Reagan appointed 290
George H. W. Bush 148
Bill Clinton 305
George W. Bush 237.
Chief of Staff
Counsel to the President
Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy
Director, Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives
Special Assistants for Legislative Affairs (lobby Congress to implement proposals backed by White House; at least 11 of these Assistants)
Office of Policy Development (13 appointments)
Office of Management and Budget (sets the federal budget sent to Congress; at least 29 appointments here)
Attorney General (12 appointments to the Office of the Attorney General)
Office of the Solicitor General (the Administration’s counsel before the Supreme Court; 7 appointments)
Executive Office for United States Attorneys (includes over 100 U.S. Attorneys across the country who bring prosecutions for federal crimes, such as, perhaps, partial-birth abortion)
Office of the Associate Attorney General (includes numerous appointees, including those for the Civil Rights Division, which defends the rights of the disabled, among others)
Department of Health and Human Services
Secretary of Health and Human Services (20 appointments, such as Chief of Staff, Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy, Special Assistant for Grants, and Counselor to the Secretary)
Office of the General Counsel (30 appointments)
Assistant Secretary for Public Health and Science (17 appointments, including Surgeon General)
Office of Global Health Affairs (5 appointments)
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Legislation (10 appointments)
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families (34 appointments)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (14 appointments)
Among other things, keeps track of abortion statistics.
National Institutes of Health (20 appointments)
Food and Drug Administration (30 appointments)
Charged with testing, approving, and monitoring drugs for safety, such as RU-486.
Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees and Migration
$750 million budget and 140 employees; oversees international family planning programs.
Ambassador to the United Nations
Argues the American position with regard to international treaties, including those dealing with family planning and women’s rights.
U.S. Agency for International Development (over 50 appointments)
Administers U.S. foreign aid, including contracts for family planning assistance.
Chairman and 15 Members, President’s Council on Bioethics
Head of the Republican National Committee or Democratic National Committee
These committees recruit candidates to run for the House and Senate, thereby having a direct impact on the composition of Congress. They also determine which candidates will get campaign assistance from the party.
THE VETO-PROOF CONGRESS
If the House of Representatives and the Senate pass a bill, the measure is sent to the President for his signature. Under Article I, Section 7 of the Constitution, the President may then veto the legislation and return it to the body where it originated.
Congress may override a presidential veto if two-thirds of those members voting in each house approve the legislation. For example, if only 90 of the 100 Senators are present for a vote to override a veto, 60 votes (two-thirds of those present) would be necessary for the override attempt to be successful. According to the Congressional Research Service, between 1961 and 2005, there were 350 presidential vetoes, 33 of which (9.4 percent) were overridden.
Generally, a “veto proof” Congress is one where the party in opposition to the President controls at least 67 seats in the Senate and 290 in the House. Those numbers would apply, though, only if a vote went strictly along party lines. They would also only apply if every single member of Congress were present for the override vote.
With regard to pro-life/pro-abortion votes in the current House and Senate, there is no fixed number as support for pro-life positions depends on the specific issue involved.
Approximate pro-life and pro-abortion strength could be measured by votes in the most recent Congress.
In the Senate, a move to abandon the Mexico City Policy that bars foreign aid from going to groups that promote abortion was approved in 2007 on a 53-41 vote (six not voting). Thus, 56.4 percent of the Senators voting took a pro-abortion position. A switch of five votes would have made the move to eliminate the Mexico City Policy “veto proof” in the Senate. (NOTE: Of the six Senators who didn’t vote, four, Biden, Clinton, Obama, and Lincoln are pro-abort; thus even if everyone had voted, it still would have taken a switch of only five votes to have made the Senate “veto proof” over a pro-life president.)
In the House of Representatives, a 2007 vote to undermine the Mexico City Policy passed 217-205, with 13 not voting. This represented a 51.1 percent pro-abortion majority. Of those not voting, only three were pro-abortion, so one could say that there were 220 pro-abortion votes on this measure; that would mean a switch of 35 votes would be necessary to obtain a veto-proof pro-abortion majority.
In summary, even if a pro-life president were elected in November, the election of five more pro-abortion Senators and 35 more pro-abortion Congressmen would mean that pro-aborts would be left unchecked to pass and enact deadly, anti-life legislation.
In the United States Senate, procedural rules allow for the prolonged delay of a pending vote. This extended delay is called a filibuster.
At one time, rules required that a Senator or Senators actually continue speaking to maintain a filibuster. Today, a Senator only need indicate that he is filibustering, although the Senate Majority Leader has the discretion to require a traditional filibuster, most famously portrayed in the movie “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington,” if he chooses.
A filibuster can hold up a vote on a bill for an indefinite period. This usually results in Senators reaching some sort of compromise on the bill or in the bill’s withdrawal from consideration. Sometimes, instead of a bill, presidential nominations to executive or judicial posts are filibustered.
Senate rules do permit filibusters to be ended by cloture votes. Invoking cloture, which ends debate and forces a vote on the bill under consideration, requires a three-fifths vote of all currently sworn Senators. Traditionally, then, a Senate is said to be “filibuster proof” if the majority party has at least 60 seats. (NOTE: Less than 60 votes would be required only if there were two or more vacancies in the Senate.)
Presently, pro-lifers are in the minority in the United States Senate. Fifty-seven Senators now favor ending the Mexico City Policy, which forbids foreign aid being given to groups that perform or promote abortion. If the Senate were to gain three more pro-abortion votes, pro-lifers would not be able to filibuster to prevent the end of the Mexico City Policy.
The filibuster could be a crucial pro-life tool in stopping pro-abortion legislation if both Congress and the presidency were controlled by pro-aborts. Most recently, the filibuster was used by pro-abortion forces to block the confirmation of President Bush’s nominees to federal courts.
The House of Representatives does not permit filibustering.
Does it matter to the pro-life cause whether a President is pro-life or not? Does it matter how many pro-life people are elected to Congress?
PRO-LIFE ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION
1) Appointed Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court. The appointments resulted in the upholding of the federal partial-birth abortion ban by a 5-4 decision.
2) Reinstituted the Mexico City Policy, begun by the Reagan Administration and reversed by the Clinton Administration (when Congress tried to reinstitute the policy, Clinton vetoed the bill), that bars foreign aid funding to groups that perform or advocate for abortions. In 2003, the Bush Administration expanded the Mexico City Policy to include not just funds dispensed by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), but also the State Department.
3) Discouraged advancement of pro-abortion legislation by announcing early in his administration that he would veto legislation that threatened pro-life policy.
4) Signed the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act, which made it a federal crime not to treat babies who survive abortion.
5) Signed the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban of 2003.
6) Signed Unborn Victims of Violence Act, recognizing the unborn child as a separate crime victim if injured or killed during an assault.
7) Cut off all federal funds to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) for its involvement in China’s one-child policy which includes forced abortion and sterilization. President Bush sent a fact-finding mission to China which found that the nation’s one-child policy was indeed coercive in nature and that the UNFPA was an integral part of implementing that policy, placing the UNFPA in clear violation of the Kemp-Kasten Amendment that prohibits any aid to any program that involves forced abortion or forced sterilization. Tens of millions of dollars that otherwise would have gone to the UNFPA were redirected to maternal and child health programs.
8 ) Thwarted efforts at the United Nations to promote abortion by instructing U.S. delegates to state at every appropriate opportunity that America does not regard anything in any document before the U.N. to establish any international right to abortion.
9) Issued Executive Order banning the use of new lines of embryonic stem cells in federally funded experiments. Later vetoed legislation passed by Congress to permit federal funding of embryonic stem cell research.
10) Signed the Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Act of 2005, which will fund research using umbilical cord and adult stem cells. The measure provides funding to increase the inventory of cord blood units available to match and treat patients and to link cord blood banks so that doctors have a single source to search for cord blood and bone marrow matches. It also reauthorizes the National Bone Marrow Registry.
11) Launched public awareness of adoption campaign, working with the National Council for Adoption and pregnancy help centers across the country. The campaign sponsored conferences encouraging faith based communities to promote adoption and produced public service announcements featuring the First Lady urging the adoption of foster children.
12) Established the first federal government and national website listing and showing children available for adoption across the country (www.AdoptUSKids.org).
13) Increased the tax credit for adoption related expenses from $5,000 to $10,000; for special needs children, the credit was raised from $5,000 for qualified adoption related expenses to $10,000 for any adoption related expenses. This was done as part of the President’s tax relief bill.
14) Annually declared Sanctity of Human Life Day.
15) Issued a federal regulation allowing states to include unborn children in the federal/state S-CHIP program, which provides health insurance for children in poor families. This allowed states to include pre-natal care in the health insurance they offer to poor children under the program.
16) The Bush Administration did what it could to stop assisted suicide from taking further hold in Oregon. The state of Oregon passed an assisted suicide law that allows doctors to prescribe federally controlled drugs in lethal amounts to certain of their patients who say they want to die. Federal law holds that federally controlled drugs may only be prescribed for legitimate medical purposes. During the Clinton Administration, Attorney General Janet Reno decreed that assisted suicide was a legitimate medical purpose in those states that permit it.
During the Bush Administration, Attorney General John Ashcroft changed that ruling, saying that assisted suicide was not a legitimate medical purpose, thereby barring doctors from prescribing lethal drugs. A lawsuit was filed and ultimately, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of allowing the drugs to be used for assisted suicide.
17) Signed legislation making it possible for a federal court to hear whether Terri Schiavo’s constitutional rights had been violated by being denied hydration and nutrition.
18) Dramatically increased funding for abstinence education through the Department of Health and Human Services, although Congress did not approve the full amount the Bush Administration requested.
All of the above is taken from Political Responsibility Center page.
I lived in the Middle East when 9/11 happened. No one protested when Bush has taken the troops to Afganistan. Until that moment, not many knew, what was really happening in this remote country, and that the Taliban’s regime was prospering there. So the whole world (well, the Western world) took a sight of relief when the Allied troops were freeing Afgan citizens after years of opression.
Iraq had a similar story in the beginning. I mean, in the western media.
We flew over to USA from Qatar, departing one minute before the attacks on Baghdad. The plain had to take different route than usually, and we just hoped that the missiles will not aim at our plain by a mistake, as they did before (like in Pakistan, instead of Afghanistan).
I couldn’t believe the propaganda in the US TV against Iraq, with all of the stories about weapons of mass destruction. For me, after living for few years in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, the reason was obvious: oil (read: money – think about US connections with Saudi house etc., plenty of sources to learn now from on the subject). So simple. Anyway.
So, what we had in USA, was a story about a society terrorized by a tyran (true), and the argument about chemical weapons, which worked. Now, Bush believed his CIA agents, and I am not sure, if his primary motive to invade Iraq, was to free and help people of Iraq and rescue the world from chemical attacks OR if he saw that window of opportunity to secure the oil market for the future (because what’s gonna happen after the Saudi king dies, or if Islam revolution tales place in that country). I think it was much more complicated than that, but for my little brain, everything in politics (unfortunetly) is about power or/and money.
US invaded, Iraqi’s looked happy on the footage shown to the world. Then the ancient conflicts, which were present before, but dormant for a while, exploded. And now the world is wondering, was it worthed to open this Pandora box? Were we better with Hussain, or are we better now with never ending stories of terrorism.
But the answer is, that the answer does not lie in the political decisions, but in people’s hearts. And I know how it sounds…
Anyway, this is what I think that I think. So, the argument, that president’s pro-life stand is just a political stand, because he does the opposite in Iraq, is not a good one. The situation in Iraq would look the same, or worse, if Iraqis would kill Saddam themselves or if, let’s say, other Muslim’s would assassinate him.
Shame on American political advisers, who thought, that the religious-political situation in Iraq could be stabilized in few months or so, and were shortsided on the issue of Sunni-Shi’a realtions (let’s not forget Kurds). Shame on them thinking that the western secular democracy can substitute Saddam’s ideas.
So (if ot is not clear yet), I think that the argument for pro-life Bush killing people in Iraq is a weak one, because he did what he did, knowing what he knew; only he knows the motivation for that decision (let’s not forget Congress, media world and “the people of USA”, who backed him on that one). He just don’t know what to do with the mess, but he wants to get out of there, I am sure.
The proof for his stand on pro-life issues are above.
For thinking: Media controls the world. Who controls media?
As for Iraqi Pandora box, hope is still there.
Pray for wisdom. Seek God. Serve the people.
VERY GRAPHIC IMAGE BELOW!!!
Excerpt from the interview with Mother Teresa: ( by the way, she prayed four hours a day)
You and Pope John Paul II have spoken out against life-styles in the West, against materialism and abortion. How alarmed are you?
I always say one thing. If a mother can kill her own child, then what is left of the West to be destroyed? It is difficult to explain, but it is just that.
Exerpts from Abortion Tv:
Source: Central Illinois Right To Life
Source:Bankole, Akinrinola; Singh, Susheela; Haas, Taylor. Reasons Why Women Have Induced Abortions: Evidence from 27 Countries. International Family Planning Perspectives, 1998, 24(3):117–127 & 152 As reported by:The Alan Guttmacher Institute Online:
According to LifeSiteNews.com, Obama is planning to implement unrestricted abortion in the USA by signing Freedom of Choice Act, which would nullify any state or federal laws blocking or restricting abortion and invalidate any limitations the Supreme Court has put on abortion.
A proposed “Freedom of Choice Act” is not about freedom at all, says cardinal Justin Rigali, the chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities.
Cardinal Justin Rigali, archbishop of Philadelphia, pointed out the faulty logic in the proposed act in a letter Friday to all members of Congress.
The act “would deprive the American people in all 50 states of the freedom they now have to enact modest restraints and regulations on the abortion industry. FOCA [the Freedom of Choice Act] would coerce all Americans into subsidizing and promoting abortion with their tax dollars. And FOCA would counteract any and all sincere efforts by government to reduce abortions in our country,” the cardinal affirmed.
Cardinal Rigali warned that the act is not a mere codification of the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize abortion. Instead, it would affect anti-abortion laws and policies that are in effect because they do not conflict with Roe v. Wade. These include such things as policies to protect women’s safety, parental rights and informed consent.
“The operative language of FOCA is twofold,” Cardinal Rigali explained. “First it creates a ‘fundamental right’ to abortion throughout the nine months of pregnancy, including a right to abort a fully developed child in the final weeks for undefined ‘health’ reasons. No government body at any level would be able to ‘deny or interfere with’ this newly created federal right.
“Second, it forbids government at all levels to ‘discriminate’ against the exercise of this right ‘in the regulation or provision of benefits, facilities, services, or information.’ For the first time, abortion on demand would be a national entitlement that government must condone and promote in all public programs affecting pregnant women.”
The prelate included a legal analysis of FOCA’s possible consequences with his letter to Congress.
“Members of both parties have sought to reach a consensus on ways to reduce abortions in our society,” wrote Cardinal Rigali. “However, there is one thing absolutely everyone should be able to agree on: We can’t reduce abortions by promoting abortion. […] No one who sponsors or supports legislation like FOCA can credibly claim to be part of a good-faith discussion on how to reduce abortions.”
this video from Grassroots Films is awesome
Biden and Pelosi, both Catholics, were asked about their stand on the issue of life at the conception during the interviews on TV lately. Their answers, not aligned with the teaching of the Catholic church, prompted a response from US Catholic bishops by publishing Fact sheet on pro-life and Church teaching on abortion.
My first iReport experience here.