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David Ripley: Planned Parenthood Dealt Body Blow by 9th Circuit Court

July 13th, 2019 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

The nation’s largest abortion chain suffered a serious body blow this week, as the 9th Circuit upheld President Trump’s new rules about Title X “Family Planning” funds. They had already lost an appeal to a three judge panel of the liberal court last month; they then asked for an en banc hearing. That ruling was issued yesterday – and Planned Parenthood lost on a 7-4 vote.

The bottom line here is that Planned Parenthood will either have to give up Title X monies – or completely separate their abortion business from their “family planning” operations. The new rules require separate facilities, separate staff and a hard line which bans elective abortion as a legitimate method of birth control.

Planned Parenthood has already stated that it has no intention of complying with the Trump Rules.

Based upon the court ruling yesterday, it now seems likely that Planned Parenthood will lose upwards of $60 million each year in Title X funds. The only recourse they have is to file an appeal with the Supreme Court – which will almost certainly fail.

This is an historic pro-Life victory – made sweeter by the fact that it came via the 9th Circuit.

Planned Parenthood will continue to receive hundreds of millions in tax dollars through the Medicaid program; in fact, this is their big cash cow. But even Planned Parenthood will feel the blow of losing $60 million in guaranteed annual revenue.

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Posted in Family Matters, Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues, Presidential Politics | No Comments »

David Ripley: Profound Disappointment with Supreme Court

July 6th, 2019 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

America’s pro-Life community was profoundly disappointed by Friday’s announcement by the U.S. Supreme Court that it would not hear an appeal of a court ruling which prevents the state of Alabama from enforcing its ban on “dismemberment” abortions.

The law, passed by Alabama’s legislature in 2016, would prohibit the Abortion Industry from destroying babies by tearing them apart, piece by piece, while still in the womb. This horrific procedure is the most commonly used method for killing preborn children in the 2nd trimester. Alabama’s law requires that an abortionist use some other, more humane, procedure to end the baby’s life before removing it from the womb.

But the Abortion Industry claims that such a requirement is “unconstitutional” because it is inconvenient and there are no equally-reliable methods for killing a baby in the womb.

There are at least nine other states which have enacted similar statutes. Idaho’s Legislature briefly considered a ban on dismemberment abortions in the 2016 Session, but determined to await the court challenges from around the country before testing the 9th Circuit.

However, Idaho was one of 21 states which filed a “Friend of the Court” brief with the Supreme Court in the Alabama case, urging the high court to consider Alabama’s appeal.

Hopes have been high among pro-Life voters since President Trump was able to secure the appointment of two pro-Life justices that the Court was about to turn the corner on Roe. Upon learning that all nine justices rejected even the consideration of Alabama’s appeal – disappointment is palpable in churches and living rooms all across the nation.

We can only speculate as to the reasons why the pro-Lifers on the Supreme Court determined that this was not a case to consider. But certainly it involves a calculation as to the odds of securing a majority of votes to uphold a ban on dismemberment abortions. No doubt there was fear of laying down additional bad precedent.

We must continue to persevere in prayer that this Court will find the will to act. It is just a moral abomination that the tortuous dismemberment of innocent babies – particularly on an industrial scale – is being protected by America’s most cherished Constitution. How can this nation claim to be a civilized people when we treat our children with such barbarous contempt?

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Posted in Family Matters, Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues | No Comments »

David Ripley: Historic Win at the 9th Circuit

June 23rd, 2019 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

This is an amazing turn of events.

President Trump won an historic victory in his drive to eliminate taxpayer support for Planned Parenthood. Since taking office, his Administration has been working to advance the protections for pro-Life Americans and preborn children at a pace never seen before in the Roe era.

Last year, the President reviewed the laws governing Title X – a program which puts the federal government in the business of helping people indulge their sexual appetites without having to worry about the natural consequence; a program Democrats like to call “family planning”. (How this came to be a federal taxpayer burden is a whole scandalous story in itself).

His review came at the urging of Senators Risch and Crapo, who wrote him a detailed letter explaining the clear intent and history of the Title X program, which was revised by Congress in the 1980’s. The clear letter of the law is that “family planning” monies should not involve abortion in any way, shape or form. Risch and Crapo argued that Congress intended that monies provided to an organization like Planned Parenthood for genuine birth control efforts needed to be rigorously separated from that entities abortion activities.

President Ronald Reagan issued rules to implement Congressional intent- and was promptly sued by Planned Parenthood. However – that case was ultimately settled by the U.S. Supreme Court in a case known as Sullivan. The court ruled that the Reagan Administration could, in fact, require that abortion providers receiving Title X must conduct the “family planning” counseling and services in a facility entirely separate from an abortion clinic. They could also require that the staffing for these two functions be completely separate.

Tragically, that rule was never actually implemented. By the time the ruling came down from the high court, Bill Clinton had become president. And he rewrote the rules governing Title X to suit Planned Parenthood. The Clinton rules have remained in place ever since – including throughout the years of the Bush Administration.

It took Donald Trump to take the fight to Planned Parenthood.

Naturally, they sued. And, naturally enough – they found various liberal judges to issue rulings in their favor, despite the previous ruling by the Supreme Court. In fact, a number of district court judges actually issued “national injunctions” against the Trump Administration rule changes from taking effect. (A clear abuse of their authority under the Constitution).

There is no doubt that President Trump is on solid legal ground in demanding that Title X funds be segregated from abortion operations. And there is no doubt that he would eventually win this fight in the courts.

What is astonishing is that he won this important round before the 9th Circuit. We cannot recall another pro-Life ruling by this circuit, even an accidental one. But this week a 3 judge panel lifted the injunctions imposed by their arrogant colleagues.

Planned Parenthood and their allies must be flabbergasted. They have owned this circuit for decades.

They have little choice but to try an appeal – perhaps to a full gathering of the 9th Circuit. After all, they stand to lose tens of millions in taxpayer subsidies each year.

In addition to the president’s defense of preborn children, we must acknowledge his sustained effort to fill judicial vacancies with individuals who have some notion of judicial restraint and respect for the clear and obvious text of the U.S. Constitution. It would seem that his efforts are beginning to bear fruit – even in the 9th Circuit.

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Posted in Family Matters, Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues | No Comments »

David Ripley: Trump Swats Another Home Run

June 6th, 2019 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

The US Department of Health & Human Services announced yesterday that it was ending a research grant to the University of California at San Francisco because that institution continues to use aborted baby parts in its medical research. That grant is worth almost $14 million a year.

The research going on at UCSF requires tissue harvested from babies aborted at between 17-24 weeks, or almost 6 months into a pregnancy. Some babies can survive outside the womb at that stage of his or her development. And, without serious debate, all of those babies can and do experience intense pain during the abortion experience.

This whole issue came into national focus several years ago when undercover videos were shot showing that Planned Parenthood had developed a lucrative black market by harvesting tissue and organs from babies they kill in the abortion procedure; the organization then sells those organs to unscrupulous medical researchers who feel unbound to abide by ethical standards in conducting human research.

On the heels of that revelation, Idaho Chooses Life pressed the Idaho Legislature to make it clear that such heinous medical research would be illegal in Idaho. We were successful.

However, during that legislative session, we became aware of the fact our own federal government was up to its hips in financing research efforts using tissue and organs from aborted babies. To the tune of tens of millions of dollars. It is an appalling situation that demanded correction. We contacted our congressional delegation and asked for their help in getting the U.S. government out of this sordid business. They responded, and upon the election of Donald Trump, began pressing for a change in policy at the HHS and the National Institutes of Health.

Praise the Lord! We are grateful to announce that, not only did HHS cancel the grant to the University of California yesterday – it also announced a change in policy. In a press release, the department said that it will no longer fund research involving the use of human fetal tissue from elective abortions.

Going even further, HHS will provide an additional $20 million to find viable, ethical alternatives to tissue gathered from aborted babies.

This is a huge development and we are grateful to the leadership of Senators Crapo and Risch, as well as President Trump for his commitment to building a culture of Life within the entire federal administration.

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Posted in Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues | No Comments »

David Ripley: Promising Ruling from Supreme Court

May 30th, 2019 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

The U.S. Supreme Court issued an important pro-Life ruling on Tuesday, overturning a bad precedent from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. The Supreme Court ruled that states do have the authority to require the decent treatment of human remains from an abortion. The statute at issue comes from Indiana. That state responded to the scandal of Planned Parenthood’s trafficking in aborted baby parts by insisting that abortionists operating in the state provide proper burial of the preborn children they destroy.

There are several important details in this development. One is the fact that this decision was agreed to by 7 of the sitting justices – including pro-abort liberals Kagan and Breyer.

The other noteworthy development was contained in the original AP report of the decision. The mainstream media actually reported that the Supreme Court ruling had the effect of requiring the burial of aborted babies “as if they were human”. The story was written in such a way as to make it obvious that the reporter was unconscious of his/her gross bias. But the phrasing is nevertheless instructive.

Obviously, there is no other possible description of the life growing within that womb than ‘human’.

The ideology of being pro-abortion requires a suspension of science and reason. The preborn “fetus” cannot possibly be “human” – because that would lead to certain uncomfortable moral problems. And even in her dissent, the Supreme Court’s leading abortion cheerleader, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, asserted that a woman who seeks an abortion is “not a mother”. That woman may not be a proper mother, she may not want to be a mother – but the biological and spiritual reality is that she is – and will forever be – a mother by the act of conception.

We must continue to challenge the illogic and irrationality of our opponents, even as we celebrate the Supreme Court’s ruling upholding Indiana’s right to defend decency. The ruling may indicate the Court will be generous in affording state’s greater latitude in protecting preborn children from the horrors of abortion going forward. Let us pray so. And may the Lord grant us the mercy of seeing the monstrous ruling of Roe v. Wade soon discarded by the high court.

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Posted in Constitutional Issues, Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues | No Comments »

David Ripley: Democrats’ Priorities are Clear – and We’re not Among Them

May 3rd, 2019 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

Since taking control of the House this year, Congressional Democrats have shown they have two priorities: Sabotaging President Trump and defending their friends at Planned Parenthood.

Nancy Pelosi’s very first action as Speaker was to marshal a vote seeking to restore Planned Parenthood’s international funding from American taxpayers. Fortunately, that effort was thwarted by Senate Republicans and President Trump.

Now, Democrats are busy crafting a bloated budget that would require the Trump Administration to restore Title X funding of Planned Parenthood. Mr. Trump has led a drive to enforce federal law, requiring a separation between abortion facilities and agencies receiving “family planning” services. The new HHS rules will force Planned Parenthood to choose between its abortion business and its dependence upon American taxpayers.

Pelosi’s budget would also increase the amount of subsidies for “family planning” by some $114 million – to something over $400 million each year.

Those Democrats crying about the “threat to women’s health” are executing a blatant propaganda campaign which is lacking in facts or truth. The simple fact is that President Trump did not end Title X funding – or even reduce the amount of money the federal government is pouring into “family planning”. He has simply re-directed that money away from the Abortion Industry. In fact, some of the money has already been awarded to pro-Life pregnancy care centers – an astonishing development.

We can only pray that the American people will restore a conservative majority to the U.S. House next year after we have all paid the price for allowing Pelosi to regain the Speaker’s gavel; two years’ worth of radical dysfunction should be enough to convince voters that we are simply not being served by the Democrat majority.

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Posted in Constitutional Issues, Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues, Presidential Politics | No Comments »

David Ripley: See the Movie

April 8th, 2019 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

Unplanned, the motion picture, continues to challenge the assumptions of Hollywood and the modern American culture. It tells the story of Abby Johnson, an ostensible Christian southern woman, who became ensnared by Planned Parenthood while yet a student in college. The independent film has expanded to over 1500 screens and is generating enough revenue to presently rank #4 in America, beating out a number of studio-backed productions.

I was able to see the film yesterday, and I am still processing it emotionally.

The film is well-acted and well produced. That is an important part of its appeal to a culture accustomed to slick production values.

I was also impressed by the decision of the film’s makers to avoid preaching pro-Life values at the audience. Abby Johnson’s story lends itself well to letting the dark reality of abortion and our cultural confusion speak for itself. The film allows Planned Parenthood to be judged by its own words and actions. And it presents the emotional struggle many women and girls face in dealing with an unplanned pregnancy with resonating compassion. But the film won’t let the audience rest there. Unplanned shows, without blinking, that abortion does not resolve that struggle; rather, the lies of Planned Parenthood transform it into something much bigger, much more painful – a solution which cannot be undone.

The film is an exercise in truth-telling. It shows the slow-walk of Abby Johnson from accepting a “woman’s right to choose”, to rationalizing her work for Planned Parenthood as a way to reduce to abortions, to finally realizing that a human being is killed in an abortion. It exposes the callous treatment women receive at the hands of their “liberators” – Planned Parenthood.

But the powerful heartbeat of this film is the inescapable truth that abortion stops a baby’s heart from beating.

After some forty-five years, no lawsuit or rally or bumper sticker has been able to alter that reality. Or to silence the voice of those crying out for justice on behalf of God’s little ones.

This film has the potential of altering the entire abortion debate in this nation. I encourage pro-Lifers to see the film, and to bring friends with them. Even those with different views on the most important challenge of our time. Let the truth of this film do its work in their lives

– David Ripley

Posted in Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues | No Comments »

David Ripley: Risch and Fulcher Sign on to Amicus Brief Defending States’ Rights

March 23rd, 2019 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

An amicus brief was filed yesterday by 77 members of Congress in a landmark case before the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. The case involves a lawsuit brought by Planned Parenthood against the State of Texas because it has been disqualified by that state from receiving Medicaid funds.

Senator Jim Risch and Congressman Russ Fulcher are among those represented in the brief by legal counsel from Americans United for Life.

In the brief, the members of Congress argue that the states have broad and shared authority under the Medicaid program to operate the health care system within their borders. Congress recognizes the sovereignty of the states as partners in the program, the brief argues, with the right to disqualify providers it deems unfit.

And that is exactly the authority Texas exercised when it chose to exclude Planned Parenthood from the state’s Medicaid program as a “qualified provider”.

This is a landmark case because Planned Parenthood has been quite successful in pushing federal courts over the past decade into defending their “right” to taxpayer monies – especially under Medicaid and Title X. Such edicts have trampled upon States’ rights and placed legislators and taxpayers in the untenable position of choosing between helping low-income neighbors with health care costs and financing the Abortion Industry.

We applaud Risch and Fulcher for fighting this insidious trend in federal courts.

Posted in Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues | No Comments »

David Ripley: Democrats Move to Protect Kittens

March 14th, 2019 by Halli

Guest Post from Tony Perkins:

What do cats have that newborn babies don’t? Democrats’ support. In one of the sickest ironies no one is talking about, Senate liberals picked this moment — 17 days after they voted to kill America’s perfectly healthy infants — to fight for the humane treatment of kittens. Maybe the DNC’s strategists are out to lunch, or maybe the Left really is this shameless, but I can’t wait to see some of these politicians standing on debate platforms next year telling the American people that when it comes to protecting living things: We chose cats over kids.

For sponsors like Senator Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), the optics are nauseating. Here he is, arguing that America “must stop killing kittens,” when, three weeks ago, he stood in the U.S. Capitol and agreed with 43 Democrats that human beings should be put down. “The USDA’s decision to slaughter kittens after they are used in research is an archaic practice and horrific treatment, and we need to end it,” Merkley said with a passion that he and his colleagues couldn’t muster for a generation of perfectly healthy newborns. His Kittens in Traumatic Testing Ends Now — or KITTEN – Act wouldn’t stop the research, but it would keep the animals from being destroyed.

“The KITTEN Act will protect these innocent animals from being needlessly euthanized in government testing,” Merkley told reporters, “and make sure that they can be adopted by loving families instead.” Does he even hear himself? They should be treated and adopted? That’s exactly what Americans have requested for living, breathing babies. Democrats said no. Killing a child is a “personal decision,” they said, and Congress shouldn’t get in the way. What a comfort for abortion survivors like Melissa Ohden to know that, given the choice, Democrats would save a stray cat over her.

“The fact that we need a piece of legislation to tell the federal government to stop killing kittens is ridiculous on its face,” Congressman Brian Mast (R-Fla.) argued. But “ridiculous” doesn’t begin to describe a party that tells America to back away from the tables of crying newborns while it rushes to the rescue of kittens instead. I suppose we should also tell firefighters when they run into burning houses to look for the pets first? After all, on the Democrats’ sliding scale of “wantedness,” shouldn’t we find out how loved someone is before we decide if they’re worth saving?

Just incredible.

Posted in Family Matters, Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues | No Comments »

David Ripley: Thank You, Mr. President

October 9th, 2018 by Halli

Idaho Chooses Life

We now have Justice Kavanaugh. The nation has survived yet another bruising, nasty confirmation vote for a seat on the U.S. Supreme Court.

It is difficult, at this point, to make a reasonable guess as to whether the nation will be stronger for having gone through this sordid process – or whether the glue that holds the body politic together in a republic has been made so brittle as to threaten civilized self-government in the decades ahead. But we know that the nation has been through worse, and survived.

We also know that the street brawl forced upon the nation over the past month or so had nothing to do with the immature social behavior of minors in high school. It was all about the possible threat to legalized abortion-on-demand. The Left concocted a plan to execute the character of Justice Kavanaugh because they determined that they could not possibly win by attacking his qualifications or judicial philosophy.

Despite the ugly tactics of the Soros-Planned Parenthood Lobby, we have much to be grateful for.

We can give thanks for the strength and character of President Trump. He is an extraordinary person. Most Republicans in his position would have found a way to dump Kavanaugh at the first sign of serious trouble. (Remember W’s pick of Harriet Miers?). His strength in exposing the Left and staring them down is truly remarkable. And let’s not forget the most fundamental fact: Thank the Lord we have a President Trump making these nominations to the high court, rather than Empress Hillary!

We must also gratefully acknowledge the courage and character of Brett Kavanaugh. Many people would have understandably folded under the pressure – especially the battering of his family. His finest moment may have come when he publicly declared that he would not be chased from the battlefield.

It remains to be seen how Kavanaugh will affect the Court. Honestly, it seems unlikely that we are on the verge of a new birth of protection for preborn Americans. But it may well be that the Supreme Court will cede more power back to the states to reign-in a lawless abortion industry. The foundations for over-turning Roe may be laid in the next few years.

Prayer for the president, the court and the nation are very much in order. The next great test of our Republic will come in November. Will America choose to reward Schumer and Pelosi with greater power? God forbid.

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Posted in Guest Posts, Idaho Pro-Life Issues | No Comments »

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