By the Minnesota Catholic Conference
As the legislative session winds down, lawmakers are pushing bills that energize their supporters ahead of the election. This was visible on May 12 when the Minnesota Senate Democrats attempted to vote on nine bills, some of which promoted pro-abortion ideology. Fortunately, each attempt failed the procedural vote.
The cornerstone of the nine-bill package, S.F. 731, goes by the “Protect Reproductive Options Act.” The Minnesota Catholic Conference opposes this bill because it codifies the right to an abortion until birth without any restriction, thereby denying prenatal justice to unborn children who are then discarded at will.
Their second bill, S.F. 1205, would remove the Women’s Right to Know protections that safeguard mothers seeking an abortion by requiring the physician to share the medical risks of abortion, the gestational age of the baby, and access to state-sponsored materials that share alternatives to abortion.
Other proposals included mandating insurance coverage of contraception (S.F. 1884), and increasing funds for the state’s Family Planning Grant, which gives money straight to Planned Parenthood and other pro-abortion facilities (S.F. 644).
The Minnesota Catholic Conference opposes such bills that promote a throwaway culture. We must work together as Catholics and all people of goodwill to ensure we never just talk the talk, but that we are truly walking with moms in need. We can do this by supporting our local pregnancy resource centers and promoting pro-family policies such as increasing funding for the state’s Positive Alternatives Grant program.
With our partner organization, the Minnesota Alliance for Ethical Healthcare, MCC continues supporting principled end-of-life care and advocating for compassionate alternatives to legalizing physician-assisted suicide. For seven years in a row, we have stopped the PAS bills from even being brought up for a full vote in committee. This year was no different, as H.F. 1358/S.F. 1352 was not heard in committee.
Pope Francis has spoken out against the legalization of PAS saying, “we can and must reject the temptation, also induced by legislative changes, to use medicine to support a possible willingness of the patient to die, providing assistance for suicide or directly causing death by euthanasia.”
The catechism also teaches that PAS and “whatever its motives and means, direct euthanasia consists in putting an end to the lives of handicapped, sick, or dying persons … is morally unacceptable” (CCC 2277). Instead, Catholics are called to create principled care models that support the medical needs of all people. Protecting the choices of a few by legalizing assisted suicide would endanger the health care choices of all.
The Alliance has built bipartisan opposition to PAS while also promoting authentically compassionate care. The Palliative Care Advisory Council bill (H.F. 2517/S.F. 2400) would fully fund the council, allowing it to fulfill its purpose of analyzing barriers to greater palliative care access. The Palliative Care Definition bill (H.F. 3148/S.F. 2912) would modify the state statute to accurately define palliative care, which could help expand access to palliative care insurance coverage in the future.
To learn about ways you can support a culture of life, visit www.walkingwithmoms.com.