- The Washington Times - Friday, November 13, 2020

A measure to ease abortion restrictions in Massachusetts has drawn the ire of the state’s leading Roman Catholic archbishop.

Boston Archbishop Sean Patrick O’Malley said the abortion provision attached to a budgetary bill is “in direct conflict with Catholic teaching” in a public statement on Thursday.

“While we acknowledge the amendment addresses some concerns that were raised about the deeply troubling provisions of the Roe legislation, the fact remains that abortion would remain an option under certain circumstances for the full term of the pregnancy,” Cardinal O’Malley said.

On Thursday, the Massachusetts House of Representatives adopted the Roe amendment to a spending bill that would allow abortions after 24 weeks in the case of a lethal abnormality to the fetus. If the bill were to become law, girls ages 16 and up would not need parental or judicial consent to receive an abortion. Currently, the age requirement is 18.

Pro-choice groups have backed the amendment.



“The House of Representatives has taken a critical first step in removing medically unnecessary barriers to abortion care and ensuring that Bay Staters are no longer forced to fly across country or forced to go to court in order to get the abortion care they need,” said the ROE Act Coalition, comprising state chapters of the ACLU, NARAL Pro-Choice, and Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund, in a statement on Thursday.

The Senate is expected to next take up the measure. Gov. Charlie Baker, a Republican, has expressed concerns about the amendment.

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