Children need help, not harm.

The “Help Not Harm Act” was formally introduced in the legislature this week, and we believe the bill is essential for children suffering from gender dysphoria in Wisconsin. The bill is authored by Senator André Jacque and Representative Scott Allen. They are joined by two other senators and nine other representatives as co-authors and co-sponsors.

The bill helps children who are confused about their biological sex by protecting them from harmful drugs and surgeries. It prohibits physicians and healthcare providers from facilitating any gender transition procedure to minors and also prohibits these providers from referring a minor to any other healthcare provider for a gender transition procedure.

A small but growing number of children are struggling to embrace their biological sex and believe that they were born in the wrong body. What these children need is real help, not affirmation of the lies they believe about themselves. However, in recent years, politicized medical organizations have pushed for invasive, harmful forms of “treatment” that can include off-label use of puberty blockers, administration of cross-sex hormones above naturally occurring levels, and even surgery.

Research shows the vast majority of these children will eventually come to reconcile with their biological sex. Given this reality, drastic and harmful interventions with lifelong consequences are even more concerning. By offering them life-altering treatments instead of talk therapy or other means of working through their distress, we are harming rather than helping them. There are numerous stories of people who later regret these interventions but are tragically stuck living with the consequences. Why would we encourage harmful interventions with lifelong, negative consequences for children?

These treatments have been proven to cause long-term, irreversible harm to minors. According to the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, cross-sex hormone risks for biological females include irreversible infertility, severe liver dysfunction, and coronary artery disease including heart attacks, hypertension and more. The cross-sex hormone risks for biological males include irreversible infertility, blood clots, and coronary artery disease including heart attacks, Type 2 diabetes and more. These treatments violate the first duty of medicine: do not harm. Puberty blockers also come with long-term negative consequences.

We also know that surgeries and drugs do not heal a hurting heart. Research shows people pursuing transition frequently have underlying or co-occurring mental health issues. In fact, “[s] 2014 study found 62.7% of patients diagnosed with gender dysphoria had at least one co-occurring disorder, and 33% were found to have major depressive disorders, which are linked to suicide ideation.” Once again, children suffering with this disorder need help, not harm.

Time and experience have taught us that young people do not have the mental faculties to make such substantial decisions. This “Help Not Harm Act” ensures that children can access real help rather than permanent harm from surgeries and drugs.

Please contact your state representative and state senator and urge them to pass this bill. Contact information for your elected officials is HERE. (Just put your address in the area at the top right.) Too many healthcare providers are acting recklessly, violating God’s design, and prioritizing ideology over the well-being of children. We must fulfill our duty and protect these children.

Election Integrity May Head to WI Supreme Court

The Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) filed a lawsuit last June challenging the legality of absentee ballot drop boxes after the Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC) encouraged the use of absentee ballot drop boxes and told voters that anyone could return their ballot for them. Waukesha County Circuit Court Judge Michael Bohren recently determined that absentee ballot drop boxes and ballot harvesting are illegal in Wisconsin. He also ruled that the WEC’s guidance in 2020 on absentee ballot drop boxes should have gone through the rules process.

“There are just two legal methods to cast an absentee ballot in Wisconsin: through the mail or in-person at a clerk’s office. And voters must return their own ballots. We are pleased the court made this clear, providing Wisconsin voters with certainty for forthcoming elections,” said WILL Deputy Counsel Luke Berg. 

Unfortunately, earlier this week a state appeals court overruled Judge Bohren and ordered that absentee voter ballot boxes be available for this spring’s primary election on Tuesday, February 15. The three-judge appeals court panel said to change the law at this point would disrupt an election already in process. WILL has not yet indicated whether they will petition the Wisconsin Supreme Court as the next step, but we anticipate that they will.

The Bohren ruling on absentee ballots would help clarify election integrity issues as we head into a year filled with critical elections. Spring nonpartisan elections will occur in April, with the primary on February 15, and fall partisan elections will occur in November, with that primary on Tuesday, August 9. In the fall, our Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, State Treasurer, Secretary of State, one U.S. Senate seat, all 8 Congressional seats, all 99 of our State Assembly seats, and half of our state Senate seats (odd-numbered districts) are on the ballot. 

Judge Bohren’s ruling is a step in the right direction as we work to combat election fraud and restore public trust in our electoral procedures. It’s unfortunate that the appeals court overruled him. As the last few elections have proven, many Americans have little faith in the integrity of our elections. To make matters worse, Democrats in Washington have been working to remove common-sense election laws. Their efforts pose a threat to our nation as a whole, as our democracy and freedom are dependent on fair and just elections. 

Americans must also be confident that their voice matters in order to appropriately engage in our Republic. This is why the state should do everything in its power to instill confidence within voters that every fraudulently cast vote does not count and that every legally cast vote does

Clearing up the issues of absentee ballot drop boxes and ballot harvesting in Wisconsin is extremely important, especially since the current governor has vetoed every election reform bill the Republican-controlled state legislature has put on his desk.

The surest way for liberal progressives to take over is for conservatives to get so discouraged by the possibility of election fraud that they don’t vote. We cannot hand our state or our country over to the left without a fight. Transparent, secure, and reliable elections are a vital part of our representative Republic. In order to safeguard our government of the people, by the people, and for the people, we must demand election integrity and ensure that election laws are clear and just.

National School Choice Week – WI continues to lead

January 23-29 marks National School Choice week, “the world’s largest celebration of opportunity in education,” according to National School Choice Week (NSCW). Hundreds of schools will spend the week celebrating choice in education. Wisconsin is one of the nation’s leaders in school choice – but we need to work to keep it that way.

Defending school choice in our state is vital to both Wisconsin families and the nation at large. Many public schools have become corrupt and untrustworthy as Critical Race Theory infiltrates the classroom, stories emerge of activist teaching, and some schools shut down due to COVID again and again. Further, many teachers do not respect parental rights and even hide information from parents. Many parents are eager to pull their children out of public school and look for alternative options.

NSCW recently conducted a survey showing that parents are unhappy with the schools that their children currently attend. More than half of parents said they had considered or are considering alternative schooling options for their children. Further, 84.7% agreed that parents must be able to send their children to the schools that best meet their needs, including “traditional public schools, public charter schools, public magnet schools, online public schools, private schools, and homeschooling.”

Happily, in Wisconsin, parents have reasonable options for the education of their children. Within the public school world, parents can choose the school in the district where they live, or they can opt for open enrollment and enroll in a school in a different district, with some exceptions. Still under the public school umbrella are charter schools and virtual charter schools.

Moving from public schools to private schools, Wisconsin offers the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program, the Racine Parental Choice Program and the Wisconsin Parental Choice Program—all of which are part of what most people call the “voucher school” option. These programs allow income-qualified families to send their children to private schools participating in Choice (voucher) Programs. Parents can apply to be part of a school choice program. Registration begins in February for Wisconsin’s Choice Programs. Of particular note is that at least one school in the Choice Program, Academy of Excellent, now offers a virtual option for parents that qualify for the vouchers.

Wisconsin also has some of the best homeschooling laws in the country. Parents are encouraged to homeschool and are not burdened by overbearing restrictions as they are in some states.

While Wisconsin is leading the nation in educational opportunities, we have more to do. We need universal choice in Wisconsin. Incomes and zip codes should not determine who gets to take advantage of our educational options. Our current governor is no fan of school choice, believing the only good school is a public school. Until we change our governor, we won’t have any expansion in school choice.

This is an issue that should concern more than just parents, but our entire community. Education holds immense power. It shapes our children, thereby molding the future of our country. In many schools across the country, however, the responsibility of educating our children has been put in the wrong hands. Ultimately, it is the parents’ right and duty to educate their children. It’s also a God-given responsibility; we must be vigilant stewards of our children and their education. Wisconsin Family Action will continue to champion school choice to ensure that should one educational option fail a child, his or her parents can responsibly choose another schooling option.

NSCW’s website offers a variety of resources that teachers, parents, and organizations can use to promote and support school choice. SchoolChoiceWi.org is also a fantastic resource for parents in Wisconsin exploring alternative schooling options.

We encourage everyone to use this week as an opportunity to share this important information about school choice in Wisconsin with your family and friends, and let’s resolve to be even better stewards of our children’s and grandchildren’s education.

WI Supreme Court: Gender Identity Policy and Parental Rights

The Wisconsin Supreme Court is set to hear a case involving parental rights and challenging the gender identity policy in Madison schools. Our good friends at Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) and our excellent national partner Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed a lawsuit on behalf of a group of parents challenging the Madison Metropolitan School District’s (MMSD) published policy that basically says parents aren’t to know what their child is doing at school when it comes to gender identity. The policy goes so far as to indicate school personnel should lie to parents if necessary. This is simply outrageous.

The state’s high court will review  the partial injunction the circuit court put on the implementation of the policy and will determine the degree to which the parents can remain anonymous. As you can imagine, anonymity is critical in a case of this nature.

Meanwhile, WILL and ADF also has sued the Kettle Moraine School District (KMSD) for a very similar reason. KMSD’s gender identity policy allows children to “change” their gender identity at school without parental consent. The policy also prohibits district employees from notifying parents of their child’s transition and even instructs staff to override a parent’s objection. In this case, at least one parent called and asked the school to call a daughter by her given feminine name and to use only feminine pronouns. The school refused. Amazing. By the way, this case started with this parent calling us and asking what she could do. We immediately put her in touch with WILL.

In the Madison School District case, a Dane County Circuit Court Judge issued a partial injunction that prohibits the district from requiring staff to hide information from parents or answer untruthfully to their questions. However, the injunction still allows minors to change their gender identity at school without parental consent. Now, the Wisconsin Supreme Court will soon hear this case and determine whether the judge’s injunction goes far enough and to what degree the parents bringing the lawsuit can remain anonymous.

Both MMSD and KMSD (and we are sure many, many other WI school districts) are encouraging educators—who know their students much less than those students’ parents do—

to push children to make a life-altering decision without the input of those who care for them most. The district is even disregarding medical professionals who warn of the long-term effects associated with transitioning at a young age. It’s clear that the district is prioritizing ideology over parental rights and children’s well-being.

“Parents’ rights to direct the upbringing, education, and mental health treatment of their children is one of the most basic constitutional rights every parent holds dear. Yet we are seeing more and more school districts across the country not only ignoring parents’ concerns, but actively working against them,” said director of the ADF Center for Parental Rights Kate Anderson.

She is absolutely right. The Constitution protects parents’ rights, especially with something as serious as a child’s gender identity, and we must demand that schools respect that right.

Parents are not only the primary stakeholders in their children’s education, they must be the primary decision makers for their children. Not only is it their right, but only they know what is best for their children. Schools across the country, however, are intent on sidestepping parents and “raising” children themselves. This means students are being indoctrinated with dangerous progressive ideology and encouraged to act in accordance with it.

We cannot afford to let our school districts get away with these harmful policies and power grabs. The development and well-being of our children is at stake. As we now know, administrators are willing to partake in deception and manipulation to control our children.

What Parents Should Do (and all concerned citizens!)

    1. Have age-appropriate conversations with their children about the boundaries their school educators and administrators should abide by and encourage them to speak up in the face of indoctrination. Be a safe place for their children; encourage them to talk to the parents about what is happening at school.
    2. Engage in the upcoming spring elections. Every school district in the state will have races on the ballot. Sample ballots and other election information should be available in the next week at wi.gov. At a minimum, find out who the conservative candidates are and be sure to vote for them—and encourage others to do the same.
    3. Explore Wisconsin’s multiple educational options for parents. https://dpi.wi.gov/families-students/programs-initiatives/school-choice. Application window opens in February for several of these options.
    4. Please pray that these cases (MMSD & KMSD) are decided justly, and that further legislation is introduced to protect parental rights.

Together, we can save our children. Thank you for partnering with us in this worthy endeavor!

Parents Have Every Right To Be Mad

Parents have faced disgraceful backlash from our own government leaders for doing their duty and standing up for their children. Last year, the NSBA likened parents to “domestic terrorists” after they spoke out against problems like Critical Race Theory (CRT) infiltrating schools. While the NSBA’s letter was alarming by itself, a newly released email reveals that Education Secretary Miguel Cardona actually solicited this letter from the NSBA. Many parents are now doubly disturbed – and rightfully so.

Parents have awakened to the corruption in our education system, and they are fighting back. Progressive activism in the Badger State is being countered by rational parents who are just sticking up for their kids.

Kylee Zempel, writing for The Federalist, reported earlier this week on a recent town hall meeting in Wisconsin attended by many upset parents. Topics discussed included Critical Race Theory (CRT), leftist teaching, school closures, and mask mandates. The meeting was organized by Former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, who is running against Democrat Gov. Tony Evers this fall. Kleefisch told those in attendance that they must become activists and combat the liberal insanity that is controlling our schools and influencing our children.

Many parents have painfully watched their children suffer while their schools refused to do in-person instruction for long periods of time. Students had a horrible year academically in 2020-21. Many struggled with virtual learning and fell behind. They also suffered socially and emotionally. Even after schools reopened, many healthy students were required to stay home and quarantine for up to ten days after being exposed, often without any at-home instruction. These lockdowns and quarantines ultimately did more harm than good, and now parents are fed up.

After watching their children’s GPA plummet during the lockdowns, some parents have decided to remove their children from the public school system entirely. Couple this with parents being upset by finding inappropriate materials in both physical and digital school libraries, boys being allowed in the girls’ bathrooms, and ideas such as CRT being taught, and you have parents looking for alternatives and making decisions to make a difference in their own school districts.

Here are three things you can do to make a difference in all this.

1. Get involved in the elections. Our spring nonpartisan elections are right around the corner. The primary is February 15 and the general April 5. This is when we elect school board members. Find out who the conservative candidates are in your district. Help them get elected. Call and find out what they need, and then step up and get busy. Encourage others to join you. Build an effective local army!

By Tuesday, January 25, you can find out who is on your ballot HERE. But don’t wait that long. Check with your municipal clerk right away. Check with friends and neighbors who stay up on local politics. Because these elections are typically low-voter-turnout elections, even just a little help can put a candidate over the finish line. Be part of the solution in your own backyard!

2. Consider educational options. The window for applying for and registering for one of our state’s educational options opens in February. If you have children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews in schools that are failing in any way, consider the options carefully, including vouchers, home-schooling and more. . You can find information about all the options, along with application materials and deadlines, HERE.

3. Pray for wisdom. Ask God what He wants you to do to make a difference. Pray for the good candidates running. Pray for the protection of students.

Parents and concerned citizens have a right to be angry about what has happened and is continuing to happen to our children in government schools. But that anger needs to be channeled and needs to be productive. Now is the time to make a real and a positive difference—for the children.

Wisconsin Family Action stands ready to help in any way we can. Call us at 888-378-7395 or email us at info@wifamilyaction.org.

One of the Ways WFA is Defending Religious Freedom

National Religious Freedom Day is this Sunday, January 16th. This day was established to celebrate our ability to freely exercise our religious liberty since our country’s inception. Unfortunately, this freedom is now under attack in America, even from our own government. Between tyrannical vaccine mandates and other discriminatory practices, our rights have been severely compromised. We are hopeful, however, that the US Supreme Court will make sound decisions in a couple of critical religious freedom cases.   

Ironically, just two days after National Religious Freedom Day, on January 18, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Shurtleff v. Boston. The question at hand is whether the City of Boston violated a Christian organization’s right to free speech by disallowing Camp Constitution to temporarily raise its flag on the City Hall flagpoles. The City had previously allowed private organizations to raise 284 flags. The Commissioner of Boston’s Property Management Department claimed that the City’s policy was to avoid flying religious flags in adherence to the First Amendment’s prohibition of government-established religion. Religious freedom, however, was never meant to be interpreted as shielding the public from any mention of religion.

Generally, the government is supposed to be viewpoint neutral, which means if the flag represents the speech of Camp Constitution, then the Camp and religious freedom should prevail. If the court determines that the flags on the flagpole represent the City of Boston’s speech, then the outcome may be different. We are hopeful the Court will recognize and uphold Camp Constitution’s right to free speech. 

Wisconsin Family Action is actively fighting for religious liberty. Just last week, we signed onto an amicus brief filed to the US Supreme Court with regard to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) nationwide vaccine mandate. The brief states that unelected administrative agencies such as OSHA tend to neglect religious freedom by viewing it as “an afterthought, an inconvenience that stands in the way of their desired policy.” Religious liberty is foundational to our nation – not an afterthought.

Further, the brief notes that OSHA bypassed the traditional lawmaking process through state legislatures. Unaccountable government agencies circumvent legislatures too often, as OSHA has done here. Ultimately, OSHA’s mandate causes “indirect coercion [that] contradicts fundamental religious autonomy principles.” The Court heard oral arguments for this case this past Friday, January 7th, and we are now awaiting their decision. 

Religious freedom must be non-negotiable. This right is a bedrock of our country and a necessity for human flourishing. On Religious Freedom Sunday, let’s pray for the preservation of this essential right in the United States. Putting our prayer and faith to action, we must also continue doing everything we can in the culture and in every level of government to stand up, show up, and speak up for our “First Freedom.”

SB 250: Concerns, Why WFA Opposes

Senate Bill 250 is making some headlines in Wisconsin with some very enthusiastic supporters, but a significant level of caution is warranted for this piece of legislation. 

SB 250 (and its Assembly companion AB 244) seeks to radically alter the election process for members of Congress and U.S. Senators in Wisconsin. It would ultimately make it more difficult for conservative candidates to win elections in our state. Additionally, it would shift the focus during elections from issues to money and name recognition, which often results in less qualified candidates taking office. A public hearing for the bill was held just before Christmas, but the Senate Committee on Elections has not yet voted on the bill. The Assembly hasn’t taken any action to date on the proposal.

This bill removes the partisan primaries for Congress and the U.S. Senate and replaces them with an open primary. Currently in Wisconsin, we have partisan primaries, meaning each party gets a chance to select one candidate for the general election. In this new proposed system, however, every candidate running for office would be in the same pool, and the top five vote earners would move on to the general election. That means that multiple Republicans and Democrats could, and certainly would, land on the final ballot in November.

The bill also implements something called “Final Five voting” in the general election. On election day, under this bill, voters would be asked to rank their choices for Congress and U.S. Senate from their first choice to their fifth (but ranking all five is not required). After the votes are counted, if no candidate has over 50% of the vote, whoever has the fewest votes would be removed. Votes that had gone to the eliminated candidate would then go to a given voter’s second choice candidate. If there is still no candidate with more than 50% of the vote, the process is repeated until there is.

The Final Five voting system isn’t necessarily complicated, but it can be confusing because it’s so different from the way we have always conducted elections in Wisconsin. To make matters worse, if passed, this bill would apply to this year’s elections. It’s a tall order to get the whole state on the same page that quickly. In addition, the cost of restructuring the voting system is also of major concern. Maine uses a similar system for a few elected offices, and their taxpayers have to pay nearly another half a million dollars per election to make this system work. Wisconsin has four times the population of Maine; so it stands to reason that our cost would be much higher than Maine’s.

Additionally, this type of election system is ripe for manipulation and election tampering. 

Because of the complexity of this system, it would likely take weeks to determine who actually won the election. Beyond that, we’ve already seen how hard it is to keep the ballot safe, secure and properly counted for one night. Imagine the antics that dishonest vote counters could pull if we allow the counting to extend over a period of weeks. 

Right now is a terrible time to further erode our faith in our electoral system. Wisconsin Family Action firmly opposes Senate Bill 250/Assembly Bill 244. 

WISCONSIN FAMILY ACTION FILES LAWSUIT TO PROTECT FREE SPEECH RIGHTS AND DONOR PRIVACY

Federal Election Commission uses donor exposure tactics to silence nonprofits

MADISON, WI – Yesterday, through attorneys with the Institute for Free Speech and Michael D. Dean, LLC, Wisconsin Family Action (WFA) filed a federal lawsuit aimed at stopping a massive expansion of the Federal Election Commission’s (FEC) donor disclosure mandates for nonprofit groups that advocate for the election or defeat of federal candidates.

WFA filed the lawsuit to protect its right to speak independently to the public about various federal candidates in future elections. In recent years, the FEC has suggested that federal law required a nonprofit who advocates for the election or defeat of a federal candidate and spends $250 or more to communicate their message, to publicly disclose the name and addresses of every person who gives the nonprofit as little as $200 in a calendar year.

“Wisconsin citizens who support our work should never have to worry that their personal information will be shared with the FEC, and thus be made publicly available. We know from personal experience that those who oppose our mission and our values are not above harassment and threats. This lawsuit is a preemptive measure to ensure our freedom of speech is protected and that our friends who financially support this organization are not subjected to disclosure or any acts of retaliation,” commented Julaine Appling, president of WFA.

“If the FEC’s interpretation of the law is correct, it’s unconstitutional. Americans have a right to support nonprofits without being reported to the Federal Election Commission or having their personal information plastered all over the internet. The First Amendment doesn’t allow the government to make such sweeping demands for sensitive information about our support for nonprofit causes,” said Don Daugherty, Senior Attorney at the Institute for Free Speech.

The case is Wisconsin Family Action v. Federal Election Commission in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, Green Bay Division. The complaint is available HERE. The press release for Institute for Free Speech is available HERE.

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 Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious freedom in Wisconsin.

Copy available online here.

Governor Evers Approves Online Sports Betting at Expense of Wisconsin Citizens, Particularly Teens

MADISON, WI – Earlier this week, Governor Evers celebrated the launch of the first-ever online gambling/sports betting operation in Wisconsin at a ribbon-cutting ceremony held at the Oneida Casino in Green Bay. Governor Evers amended the Oneida compact to allow online sports gambling in the Oneida Casinos earlier this year. Per Wisconsin law, the governor has unilateral ability to amend the gambling compacts with the Native American tribes.

Studies in the U.K., where sports betting has been legal for some time, have shown an explosive increase in teen gambling addiction. One study found more than 50% of 16-year olds had sports gambling apps on their phones before such betting was even legal there. “We know gambling operators target ads to the mostly likely segments of our population to wager; that audience is young males in their teens through early 30s,” said Julaine Appling, President of Wisconsin Family Action. “This is a vulnerable group whose cognitive ability to associate behavior with consequence is not fully developed which is exactly why they are so heavily targeted.”

The state of Michigan has set records in online gambling and sports wagering revenue just 10 months after going live. In that same time frame, the gambling addiction hotline saw a 33% increase in calls (over 2,000 more calls) in just one year. Analysts and recovery advocates have raised concerns about the lack of education and awareness campaigns directed at gambling addiction similar to ones that focus on drug and alcohol addictions.

It is expected that the remaining 10 tribes will line up to amend their compacts to allow for online sports betting, creating the largest expansion of gambling in Wisconsin history.

“Gambling is a zero sum game. It creates no new wealth, and little to no economic multipliers in the local economy. It’s a short-sighted revenue stream for government as eventually people play to extinction. The biggest winners will be the casinos and the government, all at the expense of Wisconsin citizens,” said Lorri Pickens, Executive Director of Citizens Against Expanded Gambling.

Wisconsin deserves better from its leaders. Governor Evers should always put Wisconsin citizens first.

Copy available online here.

Why Our Daughters Should *not* be Drafted

Why Our Daughters Should *not* be Drafted

BY SISI ROOSE

On July 21 the Senate Armed Services Committee approved legislation that we consider unacceptable because it would amend the Military Selective Service Act (MSSA) to require young women to register with Selective Service for a possible future draft.

We believe this legislation is not only unacceptable but also unnecessary for three reasons. First of all, there are enough male citizens in the United States to more than double the U.S. Armed Forces. Secondly, data overwhelmingly shows that the most effective units are male units, not coed units. And third, subjecting women to the same draft as men does not promote equality.

Before we go further you should know that two of my close female friends serve in the military. I am beyond proud of them and grateful for their service. I realize that they willingly and regularly put themselves through things that I never want to experience so that they are effectively equipped to protect my freedom. This is their voluntary choice.

In my opinion, they are nothing short of inspiring.

That being said, there is a significant difference between appreciating the service of my female friends who voluntarily joined the military and requiring women to join the military. With the rest of this post I hope to clarify why our nation is better served by rejecting this amendment requiring women to register for the draft.

 

America Has Enough Able-Bodied Men to Fill a Draft

 

According to the Family Research Council America has enough able-bodied men to double the size of our Armed Forces by requiring only 2.5% of the male population to serve.

“If our armed services needed to be more than doubled to five million (and we maintained the current 16.5 percent of service members who are female), that would only require roughly 2.5 percent of the male population to serve. Since approximately 1.1 percent of the male population is currently serving, this means that only an additional 1.4 percent would be needed.”

One of the most significant reasons that women should not be required to enlist ahead of able-bodied men is that it slows down the drafting process when we need able-bodies the most.

According to a letter called Special Message To The 117th Congress: Don’t Draft Our Daughters that Wisconsin Family Action president, Julaine Appling, signed, the U.S. Supreme Court, “has recognized, the purpose of a draft is not to fill various noncombat billets, it is to quickly provide qualified replacements for combat casualties.”

In other words, a draft is initiated to quickly put capable bodies on the battlefield. Data shows that requiring women to register for the draft would actually slow down the drafting process; therefore, coming in direct conflict with the purpose of a draft.

A study conducted by Naval Health Research found that most men can pass the combat arms standards while most women can’t. In this same letter Carrie Lukas and Jennifer C. Braceras pointed out that this natural difference between men and women would severely and detrimentally slow the drafting process.

“‘Gender-neutral’ call-ups of both men and women would jam the induction pipeline and slow mobilization at the worst possible time – when our soldiers are fighting and dying on the battlefield.”

In the end, drafting women is unnecessary. The United States has enough able-bodied male citizens to more than double our armed forces while only calling on 2.5% of the male population. Furthermore, drafting women would be a time-consuming detriment to our national security and those already on the front lines.

 

Male Units are the Most Effective Units

 

In Women Should Not Be Drafted into Selective Service Family Research Council reported on a study performed by the U.S. Marine Corps from April 2012 through August 2015 to test the hypothesis that men and women could perform equally well in all-male and co-ed units. Of the participants in this test, the men had average capabilities, while the women were above-average graduates of infantry training.

FRC’s summary of the collected data explained that all-male teams outperformed co-ed units in 69 percent of ground combat tasks and sex-related physical differences negatively affected co-ed units’ performance.

“In tasks resembling requirements of infantry, armor, and artillery units, all-male teams outperformed co-ed units in 69 percent of ground combat tasks. … Sex-related physical differences negatively affected co-ed units’ speed and effectiveness in simulated battle tasks, including marching under heavy loads, casualty evacuations, and marksmanship.”

Besides having lower performance, coed units also require accommodations that are not needed for an all-male unit. Mary Beth Waddell, J.D., writing for Family Research Council, said that these concerns take away from the Armed Forces singular focus needed on the battlefield.

“Co-ed units would either require special privacy concerns to be accommodated in the most austere of circumstances or sacrifice the privacy needs of servicemen and women. In addition, coed units can contribute to increased levels of sexual trauma and rape. These considerations hinder the singular focus that is needed on the battlefield to defeat the enemy.”

If the goal of the United States Armed Forces is to effectively defend and protect the freedom and rights of the American people on the battlefield drafting women compromises that goal.

 

Drafting Women Does not Establish Equality

 

The government’s attempt at promoting equality by requiring women to register for the draft is anything but that. Research shows that because so many women do not naturally meet the physical standards required such tests are “dumbed-down.”

“Officials have adjusted test requirements and scoring systems to reduce initial failure rates (84% for women, 30% for men), but equivocal ‘percentile’ scoring systems still will not disguise immutable physical disparities that the battlefield will expose without mercy.”

In other words, when the lives of women and those they serve alongside as well as our freedoms are on the line is not the time to blur readiness standards. A scoring system may make allowances but carrying a 45-pound ruck-sack through the desert and facing enemy fire will offer no leniency.

Equality is not achieved by creating two sets of standards.

Furthermore, Lukas and Braceras point out that requiring women to register for draft is not “equal” because “women in uniform suffer unequal rates of health problems, including infertility and higher risks of suicide.”

A woman’s equality and worth are not established by subjecting her to the same draft as men, instead, it places women, the individuals they serve alongside and our freedoms in greater danger.

 

What This Means for YOU

 

In conclusion we want to re-iterate that we are grateful and inspired by the patriotic women who sacrifice so much to protect the values we hold dear. However, voluntary service is quite different from required service which would compromise the effectiveness of our armed forces.

Throughout every national emergency women have been quick to volunteer and support our armed forces. Why would we assume that women would not do so again by requiring them to register for the draft?

Moving forward it is critically important that we, as citizens, do these three things:

  • Stay informed. If we do not know what legislation is proposed we will not be able to tell our representatives what we do and do not want. Furthermore, if we do not stay informed with the way our representatives vote, we will not be able to elect representatives who serve us well.
  • Communicate your desires. Staying informed empowers us to advocate for what we do and do not want. Call, email or visit your legislator; let them know what issues you care about and how you hope they will vote on them.
  • Raise engaged daughters. There are countless stories in the Bible of women who diligently sought God, were full of courage and stood up for what they believed in. Their actions powerfully and positively impacted the lives of many. They weren’t drafted into the military, but that didn’t stop them from protecting and providing for what they valued. Those are the kinds of daughters we need!

We are thankful for organizations like Family Research Council and Independent Women’s Forum for their thorough research and communication. You can support further educational materials created by Wisconsin Family Action and Wisconsin Family Council by investing HERE.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Four Resources for Responding to Employers Mandating the COVID Vaccine (or making it a condition of employment)

Four Resources for Responding to Employers Mandating the COVID Vaccine (or making it a condition of employment)

*Updated September 20, 2021

As the COVID numbers seem to be rising and government, business and employers respond, we have received more and more inquiries from people whose jobs are at least potentially being impacted by COVID vaccine mandates.

Below represents the best knowledge and resource recommendations we have at this time regarding employers and the vaccine.

NOTE: We are not attorneys. We are relying on the best legal advice we have as we give the following, but it does NOT constitute legal guidance on this issue.

WFA’s Organizational Position on Vaccines (including COVID vaccines)

We do not take a position on whether anyone should take any vaccine. We believe that is a personal matter. That said, we firmly believe in and have acted numerous times to protect the right of people to make their own decision about any vaccine.

We believe vaccinations are a personal and medical freedom that must be maintained. We also believe that any vaccine that has used tissues or cells from aborted babies comes with major concerns for anyone who is pro-life.

Wisconsin’s Current Vaccine Laws and Exemptions

Wisconsin law provides for three exemptions for vaccines; however, these exemptions apply — as written in the state statutes (252.04(3)) — to parents making decisions about vaccinations for their children going to school. The three exemptions are health, religion or personal conviction.

The question is, will the courts uphold the exemptions in situations that are not about parents exempting their children from vaccinations required for school? Right now, we just don’t know.

What Resources Do We Offer?

The following are resources from four organizations, three of which are legal groups, that we respect and have shared information regarding employees invoking a religious exemption for the COVID vaccine.

RESOURCE ONE: Alliance Defending Freedom
We highly recommend you begin by reading this article from Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), one of our frontline partners: “Summary Guidance for Religious Accommodations and Exemptions from COVID-19 Vaccination Mandates”  The included FAQ section is also quite beneficial. 

On ADF’s Facebook page you can read this helpful summary titled,Can You Get a Religious Exemption from a COVID Vaccine Mandate?

In essence, ADF recommends if you run into a problem with your employer that you engage a lawyer and ask the lawyer to contact ADF directly for more specific legal information and help.

RESOURCE TWO: Liberty Counsel
Attorney Mat Staver’s organization offers a vaccine exemption video, a form to get legal help, and sample letters to ask an employer for a religious exemption. 

Liberty Counsel Action has a page that is filled with current information about the COVID vaccine in general.

RESOURCE THREE: The Rutherford Institute
The Rutherford Institute (RI) has been around since 1982 focused on civil liberties and human rights.
RI has supplied more specific details than ADF on this employment vaccination issue, including a model letter.

**NEW! RESOURCE FOUR: Family Research Council’s “PrayVoteStand”
Family Research Council (FRC) is one of Wisconsin Family Action’s frontline national partners. FRC recently launched a new program, PrayVoteStand, that includes some additional resources on the vaccine mandate issue. Those resources are available HERE.

Family Research Council has also shared this advice from Alliance Defending Freedom.

We hope the above is helpful. Please let us know if we can be of further help — and feel free to share this information with others.

What we have given is certainly not exhaustive, but we consider these to be reputable organizations offering reliable legal guidance on this important issue. We offer this out of a sincere desire to assist those who are in the terribly difficult position of having to choose between having a job or getting the vaccine.

 

STATE ASSEMBLY PASSES FREEDOM & EQUALITY BILLS

STATE ASSEMBLY PASSES FREEDOM & EQUALITY BILLS
Legislators recognize personal medical rights & fairness in athletic competitions

MADISON, WI – Yesterday the Wisconsin Assembly passed  three important bills. These bills are now in the state Senate, and if passed there, will make it to the governor’s desk.

AB 299: This bill protects the rights of individuals to choose not to receive a COVID-19 vaccine by banning businesses and government from requiring their customers and employees be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus or any of its variants. Wisconsin Family Action supports this bill and in the public hearing testified in favor, along with literally dozens of passionate Wisconsinites who are concerned about the erosion of their freedoms. AB 299 passed with 59 Republicans and 1 Democrat voting in favor, while 37 Democrats voted against.

AB 195 and AB 196: These are the Protecting Women’s Sports bills. They are designed to protect women and girls from having to compete against biological males in college and K-12 athletics. AB 195 protects women’s sports in UW System schools and technical training schools. AB 196 protects girls in K-12 public schools, as well as private schools participating in Wisconsin’s Parental Choice programs. Wisconsin Family Action supports these bills and testified in favor of both of them during the public hearing. Both AB 195 and AB 196 passed on strict party-line votes, 59-38, with all Republicans voting in favor and all Democrats voting against.

Wisconsin Family Action president, Julaine Appling, commented, ”We’d like to thank the authors, as well as the Assembly leadership, for moving these essential bills. The bill related to the vaccine issue is fundamentally about recognizing and protecting our right to make our own medical decisions and not being discriminated against because of our choice. The Protect Women’s Sports bills are about fundamental fairness for women athletes who should not be robbed of opportunities because biological males are allowed to compete on or in a girls’ or women’s team or competition. It’s encouraging to see so many legislators understand these ideas and act on them. We urge the Senate to do the same and give Governor Evers an opportunity to also protect our freedom and to ensure fairness for girls and women.”

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 Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious freedom in Wisconsin.

Copy available online here.

Pro-Family PAC Announces Endorsements for Assembly District 37 Special Election

Pro-Family PAC Announces Endorsements for Assembly District 37 Special Election

Madison – Wisconsin Family Action Political Action Committee (WFA PAC) announced today that it has endorsed the following candidates for the special election for Assembly District 37.  The primary for this election is Tuesday, June 15, 2021.

Cathy Houchin

Nick Krueger

Jennifer Meinhardt

William Penterman

Nathan Pollnow

Julaine Appling, WFA PAC Director, commented, “It’s always encouraging to have candidates who understand the importance of Wisconsin’s best natural resource—her families—and who are prepared to do all they can to strengthen, preserve and promote marriage, family, life and religious freedom, as well as the rule of law and a strong economy by supporting capitalism and free enterprise in our state. These candidates have been carefully vetted and have met a rigorous standard to earn our endorsement. We wish them all the best as they campaign hard between now and the primary and thank them for stepping up to enter public service.”

 

 

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Authorized and paid for by Wisconsin Family Action PAC and Wisconsin Family Action Federal PAC, Leslie Harrison, Treasurer.  Not authorized by any candidate or by any candidate’s agent or committee.

Copy available online here.

Will You Join Us in Prayer?

Today is going to be a busy day in Madison! Wisconsin Family Action will be testifying on 4 separate bills: AB195/SB323AB196/SB 322SB 260, and SB 261. More information about each bill is given below. Will you join us in prayer today as we and many others will testify and present the truth in our capitol today?

AB 195/SB 323 and AB 196/SB 322These bills are the Protect Women’s Sports bills. The bills stop biological males from participating in girls’/women’s sports. AB 195/SB 323 prohibits this at the UW System schools and the technical training schools, both publicly funded institutions of higher learning. AB 196/SB322 does the same thing in Wisconsin’s public K-12 schools and private schools participating in a parental choice program.
We have hearings today in both the Senate and the Assembly on these bills.

SB 260: This bill would close loopholes in the law to make it clear that the UW Madison and the UW Medical College cannot have any kind of funding relationship with Planned Parenthood to train residents to do abortions or to provide UW doctors to Planned Parenthood to do abortions.

SB 261: This bill would add additional information that would need to be tracked and reported after an induced abortion is performed. The additional information includes reporting the sex of the baby if that can be visually determined and if there is any fetal anomaly. The bill would also require reporting the identity of the facility where the induced abortion takes place. The author of the bill, Senator Jacque, yesterday offered an amendment with a number of additional points of information that would need to be determined and reported.

The two pro-life bills will be heard in a Senate committee today.

Each of these bill is important to help protect our families here is Wisconsin. Please keep us in prayer today for knowledge and wisdom and please keep praying as these bills continue through the legislative process.

Wisconsin Family Action PAC Congratulates Winning Endorsed Candidates

Wisconsin Family Action PAC Congratulates Winning Endorsed Candidates
Pro-family, pro-life, pro-liberty candidates perform well

Madison, WI – Wisconsin Family Action PAC (WFA PAC), the state’s only conservative pro-family PAC, endorsed Judge Shelley Grogan for Wisconsin Court of Appeals District II, John Jagler for State Senate District 13, and Elijah Behnke for State Assembly District 89, prior to yesterday’s Spring Nonpartisan General Election. Each of these candidates prevailed in his/her respective races.

WFA PAC director Julaine Appling commented, “We are proud to have endorsed these candidates and congratulate them on their victories and their hard-fought campaigns. Judge Grogan will be an excellent addition to the Court of Appeals. She clearly understands the role of the judiciary and promises to exercise judicial restraint, while putting into practice her textualist interpretation of the Constitution.

“John Jagler and Elijah Behnke were in special elections, each of which had its own challenges. We know John Jagler; we’ve seen him and worked with him since he first was elected to the Assembly a number of years ago. Our full expectation is that John will continue to work hard to strengthen, preserve and promote our conservative values.

“Elijah Behnke is a newcomer, but brings great energy and common sense, in addition to solid conservative values and positions on the issues most important to us—all of which in some way relate to making sure Wisconsin’s best natural resource is strengthened—our families. Elijah understands that when our families are strong and independent, Wisconsin is also strong.

“ We look forward to good reports on the work of Appellate Judge Grogan and to working directly with Senator-elect John Jagler and Representative-elect Elijah Behnke to accomplish much that will advance the pro-life, pro-family, and pro-liberty values of tens of thousands of Wisconsin citizens.”

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Authorized and paid for by Wisconsin Family Action PAC, Leslie Harrison, Treasurer. Not authorized by any candidate or by any candidate’s agent or committee.

Copy available online here.

Pro-Family PAC Announces Spring General Election Endorsements

Madison – Wisconsin Family Action Political Action Committee (WFA PAC) announced today that it has endorsed the following candidates in the respective races for the spring nonpartisan general election on Tuesday, April 6, 2021.

District II, Wisconsin Court of Appeals

Shelley Grogan

Senate District 13 (Special Election)

John Jagler

Assembly District 89 (Special Election)

Elijah Behnke

Fond du Lac City Council

Daniel Degner

WFA PAC endorses legislative and local official candidates who have either proven track records of strengthening, preserving, and promoting marriage, family, life, and religious freedom or who give strong evidence of doing that if they are elected. Judicial candidates must be Constitutional originalists (or textualists), show judicial restraint, reflect an appropriate judicial temperament, and eschew making law from the bench.

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Authorized and paid for by Wisconsin Family Action PAC, Leslie Harrison, Treasurer.  Not authorized by any candidate or by any candidate’s agent or committee.

Copy available online here.

WI bill hurts men and women, families, children

For the third consecutive session, Republican legislators have introduced a bill to completely eliminate the waiting period after a divorce before a remarriage. Currently, the waiting period after a divorce in our state is six months—and that’s for good reason. It’s not capricious or arbitrary. It’s prudent, especially when minor children are concerned.

Even the best divorces, whatever that may mean, take their toll on the man and woman and certainly on children as the confused and conflicted innocent victims. Some time between the dissolution of one marriage before another allows for cooling off and healing, for sorting through important details, for serious premarital counseling, and certainly for helping minor children adjust to yet another living arrangement.

Read the rest of this week’s Wisconsin Family Connection radio commentary regarding this issue HERE.

WFA president, Julaine Appling, testified on your behalf against this bill.

Photo credit: Micah Pearce

Pro-Family PAC Announces Spring Primary Election Endorsements

Pro-Family PAC Announces Spring Primary Election Endorsements

Madison – Wisconsin Family Action Political Action Committee (WFA PAC) announced today that it has endorsed the following candidates in the respective races for the spring nonpartisan primary election next week on Tuesday, February 16, 2021.

Senate District 13 (Special Election)

John Jagler

Don Pridemore

Assembly District 89 (Special Election)

Elijah Behnke

Fond du Lac City Council

Daniel Degner

WFA PAC carefully vets each candidate; candidates receiving WFA PAC’s endorsement have met a rigorous standard. WFA PAC endorses candidates who either have proven track records of strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious freedom or who give strong evidence of doing that if they are elected.

 

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Authorized and paid for by Wisconsin Family Action PAC and Wisconsin Family Action Federal PAC, Leslie Harrison, Treasurer.  Not authorized by any candidate or by any candidate’s agent or committee.

Copy available online here.

Is Georgia on your mind? There may be a reason for that! How you can help.

We’ve had a number of people ask what they can do to help with the US Senate run-offs in Georgia on January 5.

Background

Typically, no state can have both US Senators up for election in the same year. However, due to a death, Georgia had to have both a regular race for one US Senate seat and a special election for the other US Senate seat, both held earlier this month.

Georgia election law requires that to win a race, a candidate must get at least 50% of the vote. In both US Senate races, no candidate received 50% or more of the vote, forcing a run-off, where the top 2 vote getters in both races face off in an election scheduled for Tuesday, January 5.

Who Are the Candidates?

Incumbent Republican David Perdue is facing Democrat challenger Jon Ossoff in one of the US Senate races, and incumbent Republican Kelly Loeffler is squaring off against Democrat Raphael Warnock.

Why are these run-off elections important? 

The Republicans currently hold a slight majority in the US Senate. If the Democrats win these races in Georgia, that majority is gone; and the US Senate will be split 50-50.  If Joe Biden becomes president, then Kamala Harris as vice-president becomes the tie-breaking vote in the US Senate.

Ideas for what you can do to help in Georgia?

  • Pray that conservative, pro-life, pro-family, pro-freedom candidates prevail.
  • Engage with MyFaithVotes, which is coordinating several options for people living outside of Georgia who want to help get-out-the-vote for these runoff elections. More information is available HERE.
  • Give financially. Our sister organization in Georgia is working hard to turn out the vote and to make sure people are fully educated on the candidates and the critical issues. Secure online donations can be given HERE.

Thanks for remaining engaged as our nation continues to sort through this contentious election. Be assured that we are monitoring the Wisconsin recount and any lawsuits that may be filed here regarding the presidential election.  We remind ourselves regularly that even in this, our great God is truly in control. We remain informed and involved, mindful of John Quincy Adams’ sage words: “Duty is ours; results are God’s.”

 

When It Comes To Vaccinations, Ethics Really DO Matter

​​​​​​​The Charlotte Lozier Institute, the research arm of the Susan B Anthony List, has been tracking COVID-19 vaccine research and development. One concern regarding the ethical assessment of viral vaccines is the potential use of abortion-derived cell lines in the development, production or testing of a vaccine. In a recent update, available HERE, the researchers verify that a number of vaccine developers are using such cell lines. The Lozier Institute hopes by providing accurate data, recipients can make well-informed decisions regarding any vaccine choices.

WFA president, Julaine Appling, says, “Moderna Virus vaccine is very much in the news right now touting a nearly ninety-five percent effective rate. Lozier institute shows this vaccine did not use abortion-derived cells lines in the development or production but some tests have used such cell lines. Pro-life citizens need to know this information as we move closer and closer to an available vaccine. Ethics really do matter.”

JUDGE AMY CONEY BARRETT BECOMES JUSTICE BARRETT

JUDGE AMY CONEY BARRETT BECOMES JUSTICE BARRETT
US Senate confirms President Trump’s conservative nominee to high court

 

MADISON, WI – On a 52-48 vote, yesterday evening the US Senate confirmed President Donald Trump’s nominee, Amy Coney Barrett, as an associate justice to the United States Supreme Court. The vote was along party lines with the notable exception of Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) who voted with the Democrats.

The following statement can be attributed to Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action:

“This is one of the good consequences of having a president who has been committed to conservative judicial appointments. Justice Barrett showed during her confirmation hearings that she is imminently qualified in judicial philosophy, temperament and character to serve on our nation’s highest court. I have no doubt that we will, as a nation, be well served for years to come by this wife and mother of seven who is a brilliant legal mind and has also had a distinguished legal career.

“The Supreme Court will be dealing with extremely important issues in the days ahead. Breaking the current possibility for a tie vote is critical. It is encouraging to know Justice Barrett is a true Constitutional originalist who is committed to the rule of law and knows the role of the court is to interpret the law, not make it. That bodes extremely well for any issue that comes before the court, including elections, abortion, marriage, health care, property rights, religious freedom or any other matter.

“While the liberals have called the process ‘illegitimate’ and accused the Senate Republicans of hijacking the system, the truth is the Constitution and even the Senate’s own rules have been followed. The president is president for the entire four years; not for just a portion of it. The Senate is elected to do its job all the time, including during election cycles. This process as it has played out since the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg last month is a powerful and very timely reminder that elections really do have consequences.

“Wisconsin Family Action wishes Justice Barrett all the best as she begins serving on our Supreme Court.”

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Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious freedom in Wisconsin.

Copy available online here.

 

Pro-Family PAC Issues Final Endorsements for Fall General Election

Pro-Family PAC Issues Final Endorsements for Fall General Election

Madison – Wisconsin Family Action Political Action Committees (federal and state, WFA PAC) today released the complete list of candidates they have endorsed for the fall general election.

                                                                        WFA Federal PAC

 

President                                                                                     US House of Representatives

Donald Trump                                                                          Scott Fitzgerald – Congressional District 5

Glenn Grothman – Congressional District 6

                                                                                                         Tom Tiffany – Congressional District 7

 

                                                                           WFA State PAC                                     

                                                                                State Senate

Alciro Deacon – Senate District 6

Joan Ballweg – Senate District 14

Scott Barker – Senate District 16

Duey Stroebel – Senate District 20

Dan Kapanke – Senate District 32

 

                                                                               State Assembly  

                                                                       

Shae Sortwell – Assembly District 2                                                       Michael Schraa – Assembly District 53

Ron Tusler – Assembly District 3                                                            Rachael Cabral-Guevara – Assembly District 55

Rob Hutton – Assembly District 13                                                         Dave Murphy – Assembly District 56

Joe Sanfelippo – Assembly District 15                                                   Timothy Ramthun – Assembly District 59

Janel Brandtjen – Assembly District 22                                                  Robert Brooks – Assembly District 60

Dan Knodl – Assembly District 24                                                          Donna Rozar – Assembly District 69

Paul Tittl – Assembly District 25                                                             Scott Soik – Assembly District 71

Terry Katsma – Assembly District 26                                                     Chuck Wichgers – Assembly District 83

Cody Horlacher – Assembly District 33                                                 Mike Kuglitsch – Assembly District 84

Barbara Dittrich – Assembly District 38                                                James Edming – Assembly District 87

Alex Dallman – Assembly District 41                                                    Scott Allen – Assembly District 97

Jeremy Thiesfeldt – Assembly District 52

Julaine Appling, Director of WFA PAC, commented on the endorsements:

“Our PACs are looking for candidates who meet our rigorous criteria for endorsement—candidates with either proven track records of promoting and defending in every way marriage, family, life, and religious freedom, as well as our system of free enterprise, or those new candidates who are at least strongly ‘talking the talk’ on these issues. We believe this slate of candidates lives up to that standard. We urge voters in their districts to support them in every way during these final days before the election.”

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Authorized and paid for by Wisconsin Family Action PAC; Leslie Harrison, Treasurer, and Wisconsin Family Action Federal PAC; Leslie Harrison, Treasurer.  Not authorized by any candidate or by any candidate’s agent or committee.

Transcript: President Trump’s Executive Order Protecting Vulnerable NEWBORN AND INFANT children

Office of the Press Secretary

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 25, 2020

EXECUTIVE ORDER

– – – – – – –

Protecting Vulnerable NEWBORN AND INFANT children

     By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1.  Purpose.  Every infant born alive, no matter the circumstances of his or her birth, has the same dignity and the same rights as every other individual and is entitled to the same protections under Federal law.  Such laws include the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA), 42 U.S.C. 1395dd, which guarantees, in hospitals that have an emergency department, each individual’s right to an appropriate medical screening examination and to either stabilizing treatment or an appropriate transfer.  They also include section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Rehab Act), 29 U.S.C. 794, which prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities by programs and activities receiving Federal funding.  In addition, the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, 1 U.S.C. 8, makes clear that all infants born alive are individuals for purposes of these and other Federal laws and are therefore afforded the same legal protections as any other person.  Together, these laws help protect infants born alive from discrimination in the provision of medical treatment, including infants who require emergency medical treatment, who are premature, or who are born with disabilities.  Such infants are entitled to meaningful and non-discriminatory access to medical examination and services, with the consent of a parent or guardian, when they present at hospitals receiving Federal funds.

Despite these laws, some hospitals refuse the required medical screening examination and stabilizing treatment or otherwise do not provide potentially lifesaving medical treatment to extremely premature or disabled infants, even when parents plead for such treatment.  Hospitals might refuse to provide treatment to extremely premature infants — born alive before 24 weeks of gestation — because they believe these infants may not survive, may have to live with long-term disabilities, or may have a quality-of-life deemed to be inadequate.  Active treatment of extremely premature infants has, however, been shown to improve their survival rates.  And the denial of such treatment, or discouragement of parents from seeking such treatment for their children, devalues the lives of these children and may violate Federal law.

Sec2.  Policy.  It is the policy of the United States to recognize the human dignity and inherent worth of every newborn or other infant child, regardless of prematurity or disability, and to ensure for each child due protection under the law.

Sec3.  (a)  The Secretary of Health and Human Services (Secretary) shall ensure that individuals responsible for all programs and activities under his jurisdiction that receive Federal funding are aware of their obligations toward infants, including premature infants or infants with disabilities, who have an emergency medical condition in need of stabilizing treatment, under EMTALA and section 504 of the Rehab Act, as interpreted consistent with the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act.  In particular, the Secretary shall ensure that individuals responsible for such programs and activities are aware that they are not excused from complying with these obligations, including the obligation to provide an appropriate medical screening examination and stabilizing treatment or transfer, when extremely premature infants are born alive or infants are born with disabilities.  The Secretary shall also ensure that individuals responsible for such programs and activities are aware that they may not unlawfully discourage parents from seeking medical treatment for their infant child solely because of their infant child’s disability.  The Secretary shall further ensure that individuals responsible for such programs and activities are aware of their obligations to provide stabilizing treatment that will allow the infant patients to be transferred to a more suitable facility if appropriate treatment is not possible at the initial location.

(b)  The Secretary shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, ensure that Federal funding disbursed by the Department of Health and Human Services is expended in full compliance with EMTALA and section 504 of the Rehab Act, as interpreted consistent with the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, as reflected in the policy set forth in section 2 of this order.

(i)   The Secretary shall, as appropriate and to the fullest extent permitted by law, investigate complaints of violations of applicable Federal laws with respect to infants born alive, including infants who have an emergency medical condition in need of stabilizing treatment or infants with disabilities whose parents seek medical treatment for their infants.  The Secretary shall also clarify, in an easily understandable format, the process by which parents and hospital staff may submit such complaints for investigation under applicable Federal laws.

(ii)  The Secretary shall take all appropriate enforcement action against individuals and organizations found through investigation to have violated applicable Federal laws, up to and including terminating Federal funding for non-compliant programs and activities.

(c)  The Secretary shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, prioritize the allocation of Department of Health and Human Services discretionary grant funding and National Institutes of Health research dollars for programs and activities conducting research to develop treatments that may improve survival — especially survival without impairment — of infants born alive, including premature infants or infants with disabilities, who have an emergency medical condition in need of stabilizing treatment.

(d)  The Secretary shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, prioritize the allocation of Department of Health and Human Services discretionary grant funding to programs and activities, including hospitals, that provide training to medical personnel regarding the provision of life-saving medical treatment to all infants born alive, including premature infants or infants with disabilities, who have an emergency medical condition in need of stabilizing treatment.

(e)  The Secretary shall, as necessary and consistent with applicable law, issue such regulations or guidance as may be necessary to implement this order.

Sec4.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

DONALD J. TRUMP

THE WHITE HOUSE,
September 25, 2020.

PRESIDENT TRUMP STEPS UP AGAIN FOR LIFE

PRESIDENT TRUMP STEPS UP AGAIN FOR LIFE
Says he will sign “born-alive” Executive Order

MADISON, WI – Earlier today President Trump via a previously recorded video for the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast, said he would be signing an Executive Order that would ensure babies who somehow survive a grizzly abortion receive medical care just as do babies who are born in other circumstances.

Calling the order the “Born-Alive” Executive Order, the president declared “the eternal truth that every child, born and unborn, is made in the holy image of God” and vowed that he will “always defend the sacred right to life.”

Congress has tried several times to pass “born-alive” legislation, but the bill has never made it through both houses.

“Protecting life is always right regardless of when or where,” commented Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action. “President Trump has an extraordinary track record of matching his actions to his words on this foundational issue. As an organization dedicated to protecting the sanctity of human life, we are incredibly grateful for this pro-life announcement.

“What the president has said and the order he is going to sign stand in stark contrast to what Governor Evers did when he was presented a born-alive bill from our state legislature earlier this session. In less than 24 hours, the governor had vetoed that bill in full, showing a total disregard for human life. Elections really do have consequences—sometimes even life-and-death consequences.”

As of the publication of this release, the text of the order was not available to the public.

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Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious freedom in Wisconsin.

Pro-Family PAC Issues Final Endorsements for Fall Primary

Madison – Wisconsin Family Action Political Action Committee (WFA PAC) announced today that it has endorsed the following candidates in the respective races for the primary election next week on Tuesday, August 11. These candidates are in addition to those announced last week.

State Senate
Cherie Link – Senate District 10
Jim Engstrand – Senate District 28

 State Assembly
Rachael Cabral-Guevara – Assembly District 55
Donna Rozar – Assembly District 69

Julaine Appling, Director of WFA PAC, commented on the endorsements:

“We are pleased to endorse these candidates. We have great confidence that they will each use their public office to strengthen, preserve and promote the core issues of marriage and family, the sanctity of human life and religious freedom, in addition to standing strong for limited government, responsible taxation and spending, educational freedom, and free enterprise. We urge voters in the respective districts to support these candidates in this primary and beyond. Wisconsin families will be well served by these citizens seeking to become statesmen and stateswomen.”

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Authorized and paid for by Wisconsin Family Action PAC and Wisconsin Family Action Federal PAC, Leslie Harrison, Treasurer.  Not authorized by any candidate or by any candidate’s agent or committee.

[googlepdf url=”https://wifamilyaction.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/WFAPAC_STATE_PR_080320.pdf” download=”Copy available online here.” ]

RELIGIOUS FREEDOM WINS AT US SUPREME COURT

RELIGIOUS FREEDOM WINS AT US SUPREME COURT
Wisconsin Family Action responds to the decisions

MADISON, WI – The US Supreme Court has upheld religious freedom in every challenge brought against it this session, with two more victories today. Today’s rulings make it clear: The government cannot dictate hiring policies for religious entities, but it can provide for exemptions based on religious and conscientious objections.

The First Amendment indeed means the right to freely exercise one’s religion for both private religious schools and religious entities. That government cannot override that right for faith-based organizations.

In its ruling in Our Lady of Guadalupe School v. Morrissey-Berru St. James School v. Biel, the Court rejected the notion that Catholic schools must allow teachers who do not hold to the faith.

Justice Alito wrote the majority opinion, stating in part, “The religious education and formation of students is the very reason for the existence of most private religious schools, and therefore the selection and supervision of the teachers upon whom the schools rely to do this work lie at the core of their mission.” In referencing a previous case, the justice writes, “What matters is what an employee does. Implicit in the Hosanna-Tabor decision was a recognition that educating young people in their faith, inculcating its teachings, and training them to live their faith are responsibilities that lie at the very core of a private religious school’s mission.”

The Court also upheld First Amendment rights in the second case today, Little Sisters of the Poor and Paul Home v Pennsylvania. The Court held that the government cannot force the nuns to take part in insurance coverage that includes contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs, in violation of violating their religious beliefs.

It is the second time The Little Sisters of the Poor have successfully defended their faith at the U.S. Supreme Court.

Justice Thomas wrote the opinion in which Alito agreed, “I would hold not only that it was appropriate for the Departments to consider RFRA [Religious Freedom Restoration Act], but also that the Departments were required by RFRA to create the religious exemption (or something very close to it).  I would bring the Little Sisters’ legal odyssey to an end.”

Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action, commented, “The two opinions are lengthy and will take more time to fully digest and apply to Wisconsin law. But they send a very clear message: First Amendment protections of the exercise of religion are not only core to our country’s founding, but they remain relevant and crucial today in the face of much hostility.”

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Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious freedom in Wisconsin.

Copy available online here.

US Supreme Court Advances Abortion, Devalues Women

MADISON, WI – Today, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a decision that devalues women’s health and the lives of their unborn babies, disregards states’ rights, highlights bad judicial precedence and advances abortion.

In a 5-4 decision, the high court determined that Louisiana’s law that would require abortionists to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of where an abortion is being performed puts an “undue burden” on women seeking an abortion and is therefore unconstitutional.

Chief Justice John Roberts cast the deciding vote, joining the pro-abortion justices Kagan, Sotomayor, Ginsberg and Breyer, who wrote the majority opinion. Roberts wrote his own concurring opinion.  Justices Thomas, Alito, Kavanaugh, and Gorsuch all dissented, at least in part.

Roberts largely based his decision on the stare decisis, which is the idea that previous court decisions dictate, in large part, the way the high court will determine current and future decisions. He opined that the Whole Women’s Health v. Hellerstadt decision arising in Texas and decided in June 2016 dictated how the current case had to be decided.  In Whole Women’s the Supreme Court ruled 5-3 that abortion restrictions Texas had enacted restricted access to abortion and put an “undue burden” on women seeking an abortion. Requiring admitting privileges was one of the restrictions in the Texas law.

Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling commented, “I find Roberts’ legal analysis and decision incredibly weak and quite frankly dangerous. As Roberts noted in his own concurrence, stare decisis is not ‘an inexorable command,’ Yet he inexorably and wrongly followed it in this decision.

“If the court somehow sees itself as duty-bound to this legal idea, then bad decisions will be and have been, in general, indefinitely perpetuated. Whole Women’s Health was a bad decision. Using it as the reason for another bad decision from the high court in this current case is not just lame but is downright dangerous to the health and safety of women.

“Louisiana passed this law with the well-being of women in mind. They had every right to do so, just as we did in Wisconsin when we passed enacted the same law in 2013. Planned Parenthood immediately challenged our law. As a result, it has never been enforced here; and now we know it likely never will be. The Supreme Court had a perfect opportunity to right a wrong. The Chief Justice chose to sabotage that effort. Americans deserve better from their high court.”

Wisconsin Family Council, the educational arm of Wisconsin Family Action, was part of a friend-of-the-court amicus in support of the State of Louisiana in this case (June Medical Services L.L.C. v. Gee).

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Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious freedom in Wisconsin.

Copy available online here.