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Support Biden’s rescue plan

To the editor:

President Joseph Biden’s American Rescue Plan (ARP) should command pro-life support. It directly saves lives by expanding vaccines and fights poverty with unemployment benefits, stimulus checks, rent assistance and the new child tax credit.

Official Catholic teaching says helping the poor is pro-life. Commonweal, a pro-life Catholic publication founded in 1924, reports, “The ARP is perhaps the single greatest expression of solidarity in American politics since Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society. The law includes an enormous increase in the child tax credit; and is expected to reduce childhood poverty in the United States by half.”

In Michigan alone, the Rescue Plan is expected to lift about 117,000 children out of poverty. According to the Center for American Progress, “The harmful effects of child poverty exact enormous costs on America’s society and overall economy.”

Putting money in the hands of poor parents will speed the economic recovery as “their expenditures for goods and services will have a ‘multiplier effect’ on the economy.”

The ARP is popular. A CBS/YouGov poll reports that roughly 75% of Americans support it, including 46% Republicans. But no Congressional Republican voted for it. Shame on Congressman Bergman for voting against it — a position that is against the best interests of his U.P. constituents. According to former U.P. Congressman Bart Stupak, “U.P. counties and businesses will receive approximately $57 million from the Rescue Plan to recover from the effects of the pandemic.”

The Rescue Plan’s refundable child tax credit is pro-birth. Research shows that for 73% of women who choose abortion say they simply cannot afford to have the baby. The credit’s payments to pregnant women will only be made if they choose to have their babies. This will save babies.

Yet the single-issue Right to Life of Michigan falsely claims ARP is “pro-abortion.” “Not true” says former Congressman Stupak, who pushed the abortion prohibition in the ACA.

“The law does not allow abortion; besides the Hyde Amendment’s prohibition against abortion is still the law of the land,” he said.

Pro-life groups and their partisan allies apparently have little interest in protecting vulnerable children after they are born. Those who say they are pro-life have no justification to oppose a law that is so obviously pro-life.

Let’s come together in solidarity and unity to defeat this pandemic.

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: Robert Anderson is a Marquette-based attorney, former adjunct professor at MTU and is active in his church.

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