Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Democratic legislative priorities in Centennial State

Why is it such a high priority for the Democrats to enact this law? And certainly, the objections of the bishop here should be taken into account and codified into the legislation, at the very least.

Though strongly pro-life, my view is that rape victims should be informed about the potentially abortifacient aspects of emergency contraceptives, as well as any potential side effects for the woman herself. Fully informing the woman of all the dynamics of the decision is the proper way to go, although I would prefer that Catholic and other religious medical personnel would not be forced by law to raise the possibility of emergency contraceptive, but that they would be compelled to discuss the matter, or at least bring in someone else, to discuss the matter if raised by the patient.

DENVER Mar 30, 2005 — Gov. Bill Owens, a Roman Catholic who campaigned for office on conservative values, could face a tough choice deciding whether to sign a bill requiring hospitals to tell rape victims about emergency contraception.

Fellow Republicans say the bill, passed by the Legislature on Tuesday, violates Catholic hospitals' freedom of religion by forcing them to offer information about abortion. Democrats say the bill simply requires that help be given to women whose bodies have been violated.

In the middle is Owens, who refused to immediately take a position after the legislation was approved. Spokesman Dan Hopkins said Owens would "carefully consider" it before deciding whether to sign the legislation.

Republicans blocked similar versions of the bill the past two years, when they were in charge. Democrats captured both the House and Senate last November and pushed the measure through.

Denver Roman Catholic Archbishop Charles Chaput objected to the bill because it does not require health care workers to tell rape victims that some medications stop a fertilized egg from being implanted, which he says amounts to abortion. He said the church does not object to rape victims taking steps to prevent ovulation when there is no risk to a fertilized egg.