USCCB pro-life chairman urges Biden to act like the ‘devout Catholic’ he says he is

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Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Oct 12, 2021 / 10:53 am (CNA).

The U.S. Catholic bishops’ pro-life chairman is expressing disappointment with President Biden as his administration reverses a Trump-era rule that restricted funding over abortion.

“It’s really sad,” Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City, who heads the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Committee on Pro-Life Activities, told EWTN News Nightly on Oct. 8. The Biden administration, he added, is “in the control of abortion extremists.” 

The archbishop reacted to the administration’s reversal of the “Protect Life Rule,” which barred tax dollars from Title X recipients that provide or promote abortion and required Title X clinics to be physically separate from abortion clinics. A federal program, Title X subsidizes family planning services, including contraceptives, for low-income communities. 

The archbishop challenged President Biden – the second Catholic president in U.S. history – to defend and cherish human life.

“He likes to call himself a devout Catholic. I would urge him to begin to act like one, especially on the life issues,” Archbishop Joseph Naumann said. “And to let his faith really inform his conscience and the decisions that he’s making, not the platform of his party.” 

President Biden has repeatedly demonstrated support for abortion. After decades of backing the Hyde Amendment, which barrs taxpayer funding from going toward abortion, he switched his position while running for president. More recently, in the wake of Texas’ new abortion law, he confirmed that his administration is “deeply committed” to abortion as a constitutional right. According to White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, the president “believes that it’s up to a woman to make those decisions and up to a woman to make those decisions with her doctor.”

Right now, the archbishop said, the Biden administration is “looking for every opportunity to expand abortion,” and this latest reversal is “just one more casualty along that train.”

In an Oct. 7 statement, Archbishop Naumann stressed that Title X was “intended and authorized to be a program entirely separate from abortion.” Abortion, he concluded, is not family planning. Instead, it wounds women and “takes the life of an already-conceived and growing child.”

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