New Jersey U.S. Congressman discusses how to curb abortion trend ahead of possible Roe vs. Wade vote
There are troubling, concerning statistics from the CDC regarding the increase in abortions across the United States.
The numbers from their abortion surveillance program reported 629,898 abortions taking place during the recent study year of 2019, according to 49 reporting areas across the country with the abortion rate rising 2-percent over 2018 -- according to the CDC.
There is a chance the number of abortions could go up in New Jersey moving forward as well after Governor Phil Murphy recently signed legislation named the 'Reproductive Freedom Act', saying there was an urgent need to take such action, stating in a tweet, "with Roe v. Wade under attack, the need for this bill is more urgent than ever."
U.S Congressman Chris Smith (R), who represents a large portion of Monmouth and Ocean Counties, is also the Co-Chair of the Pro-Life Caucus in Washington and has been fighting for years to provide rights and protection to the unborn and with the new law in New Jersey, there is a new fight ahead.
"Governor Murphy signed a law that legalizes abortion until birth, that is an unbelievable tragedy that he has turned his back and the state legislature on the precious lives of unborn children and equally on the lives of those women who are harmed by abortion," Smith tells Townsquare Media News. "We'll have more abortions in New Jersey because of his law that he signed and it's a tragedy in the extreme and I would hope that he would revisit it, that he would have a moment where he says 'oh my God, what have I done?' in the middle of the night to wake up and say 'what have I done?'. These children, I mean -- hold a newborn baby in your arms, backtrack a day, a week, a month, couple of months -- those kids can all be killed, legally, in New Jersey and right now, in almost every state."
While the altering or complete overturn of Roe v Wade could happen this year by the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington D.C., Congressman Smith explains that there are things that can be done moving forward to protect lives and prevent abortions.
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Congressman Smith explains that mortal objections people of faith inside the Catholic Church and other branches of Christianity and religions have on abortion and who want to choose and celebrate life.
"There's no doubt that the Catholic Church and increasingly the Evangelical churches, the Orthodox Jewish community -- many in the faith community -- but the Catholic church took the lead early on and has maintained it to ensure that respect for life is real, that birth is seen as an event that happens to each and every one of us, it's not the beginning of life, that is so anti-scientific, especially in the era of ultrasounds where you can look at pictures of the children very early in pregnancy," Smith tells Townsquare Media News. "It shatters the myth that somehow the baby isn't human and not alive and the church has been so clear, so non-ambiguous in saying we should love them both and that even if a woman does get an abortion, there is reconciliation and hope for her and Project Rachel and all the other initiatives that the church does to reach out to those women to say the Lord is there for you, He loves you, He wants you reconciled."
"“How can an action that ends an innocent and defenseless life in its blossoming stage be therapeutic, civilized or simply human? I ask you: Is it right to ‘do away with’ a human life in order to solve a problem? Is it right to hire a hitman in order to solve a problem? One cannot. It is not right to ‘do away with’ a human being, however small, in order to solve a problem. It is like hiring a hitman,” -- Pope Francis on abortion, October 10, 2018, via Catholic News Agency.
"Unfortunately, as the Pope said, it does not solve a problem. We know that post-abortion stress syndrome is very real, even though it's trivialized and mocked by the abortion movement that women do suffer immediate and long-term, especially consequences and they need to be helped," Congressman Smith said.
If the Supreme Court does decide to reverse and overturn Roe vs. Wade which came down on January 22, 1973, Smith explains that it would help prevent further loss of life through abortion.
"It is unconscionable the numbing loss of children's lives and then all of the women whose lives have been now affected with the deleterious effects of abortion," Smith said. "We're hoping that the Dobbs case, which emanated out of a Mississippi law that bans abortions after 15-weeks -- so it's a step in the right direction, right now Roe vs. Wade is until birth -- will cause the court to look at not just that state law but look at all the rest."
Smith explains that the Court now has the chance again to make things right.
"I'm hopeful that they will, it'll mean that we have a national debate on abortion, the likes of which we have never had and I welcome it, we need for the American people -- who according to the (Marist) polling, is still, very pro-life," Smith said.
One of the other problems associated with abortion Smith also wants to address is people being forced to pay for abortions who are morally/ethically/religiously opposed to it taking place.
There is protection out there called the Hyde Amendment, which has been renewed every year since 1976, according to Congressman Smith, and last week he thanked Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy for their efforts in working to ensure the Hyde Amendment has renewed again in 2022.
The Hyde Amendment prevents the use of federal funding for abortions by forcing taxpayers to fund the killing of unborn children through abortions.
Since 1976, the Hyde Amendment has saved the lives of 2.4-million children according to the Charlotte Lozier Institute.
"Joe Biden, who once voted for the Hyde Amendment, and said that nobody should force us to pay for abortions, he even said it protects mothers and babies. He has now done a 180-degree reversal and is the abortion president, executive orders have been flying out of the White House to pay for abortions overseas particularly through what we call the Mexico City policy to fund organizations that are trying to bring down pro-life laws all around the world and domestically," Smith said.
Smith is looking for more movement with and from the Hyde Amendment to curb the number of abortions and prevent forced funding from people who don't want anything to do with paying for an abortion.
"The best estimates are that when there's no Medicaid funding for abortion, public funding -- about 60,000 who would have been aborted, are not aborted, and the estimates are anywhere from 2.4-million or more children are on this earth because the money wasn't there to facilitate their demise," Smith said.
"Please don't kill the child. I want the child. I am willing to accept any child who would be aborted and give him or her to a married couple who will love the child and be loved by the child. At our children's home in Calcutta alone, we have saved more than 3,000 children from abortion. These children have brought so much love and joy to their adoptive parents and have grown up so full of love and joy," -- Mother Theresa in her 1994 letter to the U.S. Supreme Court asking them to overturn Roe vs. Wade, as printed by the National Catholic Register.
There is nothing easy or simple about any of this and there are certainly women and men out there who to this day regret the decision to abort the child, but for anyone pondering making that decision, Smith explains that there is help and ways to give that child a home.
"The number of people, moms, and dads, waiting to adopt is huge. There's a lack, scarcity of available babies, that's why so many go for foreign adoptions because in America, either the child is kept by the mother or aborted and so many are aborted," Smith said. "I'm a great believer in adoption. We've got to get through to more people that an adoption is a loving option, it is building a family for a couple for example who don't have access to a child, for whatever reason."
You can hear more about the Right to Life movement and related topics with U.S. Congressman Chris Smith on the latest episode of 'Eyes On The Jersey Shore'.