Joe Ortwerth's
 Jeff City Update
Missouri Family E-News May 18, 2009
Says No to Homosexual
Agenda in Schools
The Missouri Legislature has rejected efforts to promote the homosexual lifestyle in Missouri schools.  The Missouri House voted to remove an amendment to an education bill that would have revised the state's anti-bullying statute.  The amendment would have prohibited bullying based on a student's so-called sexual orientation.  Schools would have been required to adopt policies discouraging such bullying.  The amendment would have replaced the state's current anti-bullying policy which says that all students shall be treated equally and shall not contain special lists of protected classes of students who are to receive special treatment.  The House voted to retain the current policy by a vote of 94-55.  Representative Darrell Pollock of Lebanon led the effort to defeat the "sexual orientation" amendment.
Legislators Vote to Protect Homeschooling
Members of the Missouri House voted overwhelmingly this past week to preserve the rights of home educators across the state.  Legislators voted to eliminate language in an education bill viewed as a threat to the home school community.  Advocates of home education argued that the language would require that high school-age home school students prove that they had sixteen credits toward high school graduation.  Home school proponents claimed this could empower the state education department to require compulsory school attendance for high school-age children.  Representative Rodney Schad of Versailles sponsored the successful amendment to remove the objectionable language.  Hundreds of home school parents and children converged on the Capitol last Thursday to voice their concerns about the language.  While efforts were already underway to correct what was was generally viewed as an inadvertent impact on homeschooling, the home educators' rally certainly bolstered the efforts to rectify the issue.  Kerry Messer, the lobbyist for Families for Home Education, played a leading role in preserving the independence of home school families.
Says it is 
A recent survey conducted by the Gallup Organization provides heartening news for the pro-life movement.  According to the survey, 51% of Americans call themselves "pro-life," and only 42% call themselves "pro-choice."  This is the first time a majority of Americans have identified themselves as pro-life since the question was first asked fifteen years ago.  49% of women say they are pro-life, and 44% "pro-choice."  54% of men profess to be pro-life and 39% "pro-choice."  71% of conservatives, 45% of moderates, and 19% of liberals say they are pro-life.  A close look at the survey results reveals that national pro-life sentiment has risen to the level that existed shortly after the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision in 1973.  More than 75% of respondents to the survey said that abortion should be illegal in all circumstances or legal in only limited circumstances.  Only 23% believe that abortion should be legal throughout pregnancy for any reason, which is the current state of the law in our nation.  Please pray in thanksgiving that our nation is returning to respect for the sacredness of human life.
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Missouri House Rejects Pro-Life Ultrasound Bill
Pro-life legislation died in the final days of the legislative session when the Missouri House rejected a comprehensive informed consent proposal approved by the Missouri Senate.  The most significant section of the bill guaranteed that women considering abortion would have the opportunity to see an ultrasound of their unborn child.
Under the provisions of the proposal, women seeking abortions would have been provided the following information in person at least 24 hours before an abortion could be performed:
* Information on the development of the unborn child, including photos at two week gestational increments;
*Information on the nature of the abortion procedure, and its immediate and long-term risks to the woman's health;
*Information on alternative to abortion programs, and agencies providing such services;
*Information on the financial and legal obligations of the father of the child
*Information that the unborn child may experience pain in abortions performed in the second and third trimester;
*The opportunity to view an active ultrasound of the unborn child and to hear the heartbeat of the child if it is audible.
These stronger informed consent requirements would have become effective this year for abortion clinics performing abortions more than one day a week, and on a delayed three year basis for clinics performing abortions one day a week.
Senator Rob Mayer of Dexter, the sponsor of the Senate version, worked with Senate leadership to overcome a filibuster waged by pro-abortion senators.  Filibusters had frozen the work of the Senate on numerous issues throughout the session, and shutting down the filibuster was a monumental achievement.  The bill was approved by the Senate on the third last day of the session by a vote of 25-7.  You can learn how your state senator voted at the end of this article.  The bill then needed to be returned to the House of Representative for final passage.
The following day, certain organizations and individuals that claim to be pro-life worked to kill the bill in the House.  They spread false and misleading information about the bill, distorting its provisions.  They had promised that if the bill did
not include everything they wanted, they would work to defeat it despite its many valuable, life-saving provisions.
Unfortunately, House members believed the false information and voted to reject a very substantive and effective piece of pro-life legislation.  In fact, had this bill passed, it would have been the most beneficial pro-life bill passed by the Missouri Legislature in two decades.
Because of the disappointing behavior of certain groups that claim to be pro-life, more children will die tragically at the hands of abortionists and more women will be maimed and wounded for life.  Missouri's current informed consent law is thoroughly ineffective and of little to no help to pregnant women.  These women continue to receive no truthful information about the nature and consequences of the abortion procedure.
Please pray in thanksgiving for the honorable leadership of Senator Mayer, whose praiseworthy work on behalf of the pro-life cause was undone not by pro-abortion forces, but by people who claim to be pro-life.  In fact, we would encourage you to send him an e-mail at rob.mayer@senate.mo.gov and tell him you are praying for him. Thank the senator for his valiant efforts on behalf of the unborn, and his outstanding personal integrity.
Here is how your state senator voted on the informed consent proposal.  If they voted yes, please take the time to let them know you appreciate their noble actions.  If they voted no, please pray for them that they will no longer be blinded to the truth.
Senators voting for Senate Substitute for House Committee Substitute for House Bills 46 & 434:
Senators Barnitz, Bartle, Callahan, Champion, Crowell, Cunningham, Dempsey, Engler, Goodman, Griesheimer, Lager, Lembke, Mayer, McKenna, Nodler, Pearce, Purgason, Ridgeway, Rupp, Schaefer, Schmitt, Scott, Shields, Shoemyer, Stouffer
Senators voting against SS HCS HBs 46 & 434:
Bray, Clemens, Days, Justus, Smith, Wilson, Wright-Jones
Senators absent:
Green, Vogel
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