Three U.S. bishops have written to Congress expressing their "disappointment" that the healthcare bills currently being considered in Congress have not addressed the issue of federal funding of abortion, and warning that unless their concerns are addressed, the U.S. bishops will have to oppose "vigorously" the health care reform legislation.
Writing on behalf of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), the three bishops said in a letter released today, "We are writing to express our disappointment that progress has not been made on the three priority criteria for health care reform that we have conveyed previously to Congress."
"In fact," they point out, "the Senate Finance Committee rejected a conscience rights amendment accepted earlier by the House Energy and Commerce Committee."
The three signatories of the letter, Cardinal Justin Rigali, Bishop William Murphy and Bishop John Wester, chair the Committees on Pro-Life Activities, Domestic Justice and Human Development, and Migration, respectively, for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). They had previously sent a letter to the senate on September 30, outlining their concerns with the healthcare overhaul plan.
The bishops go on to threaten that, if the healthcare legislation fails to meet the core principles outlined by them in their previous communications, "we will have no choice but to oppose the bill."
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