Bartlett Amendment Dropped From HEW Bill

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Bartlett Amendment Dropped From HEW Bill

By W. H. MARSHNER

THE WANDERER
(Special to The Wanderer)
December 5, 1974

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Senate and House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted in favor of HR 15580, the appropriations bill for the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, without the anti-abortion language proposed in an amendment sponsored by Sen. Dewey Bartlett (R., Okla ).

This bill was originally approved by the House of Representatives after the House voted down an anti-abortion amendment by Cong. Angelo Roncallo (R., N.Y.) (see The Wanderer, July 11th, 1974, p.l). In the Senate, however, the bill passed with Bartlett’s pro-life amendment which read:

“(At the end of the bill, add a new section as follows:)

“No part of the funds appropriated under this Act shall be used in any manner directly or indirectly to pay for or encourage the performances of abortions except such abortions as are necessary to save the life of the mother” (see The Wanderer, Sept. 26th, 1974, p.l).

Because of differences in the House and Senate versions of the bill, the Senate-approved proposal then went to a conference committee of senators and congressmen to work out mutually acceptable language (see The Wanderer, Oct. 3rd, 1974, p.l).

The conference committee approved the bill without the Bartlett amendment. According to the Washington Post, most conference members were sympathetic to the language of the amendment, but felt it was more appropriate as legislation than as part of an appropriations bill. On the same day, Nov. 26th, both the Senate and the House voted on the conference-approved measure: the vote in the Senate was 64 to 16 in favor of it, and the vote in the House was 350 to 25 for the bill.

Notably, HEW has admited that sixteen States use Title IV-A funds under the Social Services Act and Title XIX funding (Medicaid) for abortion (see The Wanderer, July 25th, 1974, p.l). Also, a recent survey indicates that four States also use Title IV-A funds for sterilization.

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