Governor Jerry Brown has signed a bill that forces crisis pregnancy centers that are a counterbalance to the abortion industry to refer pregnant women to and promote abortion centers. AB 775, called the “Reproductive FACT Act,” has no conscience clause or opt out for centers that provide pregnant women assistance without abortions or abortion referrals. The penalty is a $500 fine for the first offense and $1,000 for each subsequent offense. Many of those who spoke in opposition to the bill were organizational representatives who spoke on behalf of thousands of others.
The bill was passed 11-5 even though there were objections by expert witnesses from legal and medical fields, along with 82 witnesses against the bill.
This is not the only recent legislation passed in support of abortion in California. In 2014, for instance, the state cut funding for all medical reimbursements by 10 percent except abortion, which was increased by 40%.
“Now the state has passed a discriminatory regulation that forces local Chrisis Pregnancy Care Centers and Clinics, which are faith-based pregnancy care centers and which provide free and confidential support services to pregnant mothers, to advertise and promote chemical and surgical abortions.” These crisis pregnancy clinics exist largely to persuade women to carry pregnancies to full term. Opponents said the legislation amounted to an unconstitutional attack on private entities’ core beliefs. The bill makes no provisions for accommodation of religious convictions.
Eve Marie Barner Gleason, director of Center Best Practices, said the measure “is clearly biased in its approach.” Abortion providers see money lost every time a mother chooses to carry her baby full term. So, they lobby hard for legislation that supports their grisly industry.
Brown’s signature triggered a series of first amendment lawsuits because it forces religious pregnancy clinics to tell women and girls that California has public programs to provide immediate, free or low-cost abortions. “Forcing a religious pro-life charity to proclaim a pro-abortion declaration is on its face an egregious violation of both the free speech and free exercises clauses of the First Amendment,” said Brad Dacus, president of the Pacific Justice Institute. “We will not rest until this government mandate is completely halted,” he said.
The United States “shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government…” Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, page 451.