IOWA COURTS ASKED TO RECONSIDER ABORTION CASES
Gov. Reynolds has announced she will urge the Iowa Supreme Court to reconsider the latest Planned Parenthood v. Reynolds case (a law requiring a 24-hour waiting period before an abortion) in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to reverse Roe v. Wade.
In another welcome move, the governor will request that the Iowa courts lift the injunction against enforcement of Iowa’s “fetal heartbeat” law, which prohibits abortion after a heartbeat can be detected.
CONGRESS PASSES BIPARTISAN SAFER COMMUNITIES ACT
Thanks in part to your advocacy in support of reasonable gun control measures, the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act passed both the Senate and House of Representatives and was signed into law.
Following the passage of the bill, Archbishop Paul S. Coakley of Oklahoma City, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, commended members of Congress.
“I welcome the passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which will take meaningful action to prevent gun violence and protect lives. The investments in mental health services and reasonable measures to regulate guns included in this bill are positive initial steps towards confronting a culture of violence,” the bishop said. “I commend members of Congress for their work thus far and encourage them to continue working to confront the plague of gun violence in our nation.”
The USCCB has consistently supported the sensible regulation, sale, and use of firearms.
SUPREME COURT WRAPS UP TERM
The Supreme Court has wrapped up its term. Here are a few more recent decisions of note:
In Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the high school football coach who fought for his right to pray after games, overturning a decision that had long restricted religious expression in public schools.
“We must always remember the importance of prayer in American life,” said Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, chairman of the USCCB Committee for Religious Liberty. “The freedom to pray is essential to the moral duty all people possess toward the truth. The Court’s decision to prevent the forced expulsion of voluntary prayer from public life is a major victory for all Americans who wish to discover and live the truth.”
The Court pointed out that Coach Kennedy had observed this tradition for years and did not force any of his players to join him. In addition, he made sure his team knew it was optional, and did not play favorites to those athletes that decided to partake in his prayer.
The Court issued its decision in the case of Carson v. Makin, which challenged a decision by the First Circuit to allow the State of Maine to exclude religious schools from a tuition assistance benefit on the basis that those schools include religion as part of their instruction. The Court again affirmed that states cannot exclude religious schools from generally-available public benefits based on their religious affiliation or exercise.
Some claim this decision mandates public funding of private schools. The ruling does no such thing.
In Biden v. Texas, the Court found that Secretary of Homeland Security’s termination of the Migrant Protection Protocols (“Remain in Mexico”) was lawful.
A brief supported by the USCCB argued that MPP was immoral because it disregarded the God-given dignity of those enrolled, contrary to Catholic social teaching, and illegal because it violated the United States’ non-refoulement obligations under U.S. and international law.
The bishops continue to advocate that Congress act on immigration policies that produce more sustainable solutions, respect the God-given dignity of migrants, and better reflect Christ’s call to welcome the stranger.
The West Virginia v. EPA decision limits the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in its power to regulate greenhouse gases. In response, Archbishop Coakley said “Both reasonable regulation and legislation are critical for addressing the threat and challenges of climate change. We call upon Congress to give the EPA the necessary authority to meaningfully regulate greenhouse gases.”
Have a great 4th of July weekend!