February 19, 2021
Another week and another chance to move forward the pro-life agenda.
Even under the shadow of a pro-abortion federal government,
God gives us grace each day to advance in faith in defense of the right to life.
Live every day “Coram Deo”: before the face of God!
NEWS AND VIEWS
1. In what may be a surprising move, the Biden administration issued an executive order this week that will re-start an office first established by then-President George W. Bush that interfaces between the federal government and faith-based organizations. The White House office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships will be in place of the Trump-era White House Faith and Opportunity Initiative. Former Obama administration official Melissa Rogers will be the director of this office. One hopes for positive outcomes from this move, but it is interesting to note the Biden administration looks to get the federal government more involved in the faith community, while the Trump-era focus was to get the federal government out of the way of the faith community so they can do their charitable work.
2. Reflecting the concept that personnel is policy, a former Trump administration official is pointing out the Biden administration is telegraphing its commitment to the radical left. Roger Severino, former head of the Office of Civil Rights, notes the picks of former California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Pennsylvania transgender health official Dr. Rachel Levine (biologically a man), indicates the administration wants the federal government to push radical pro-abortion, anti-family policies. Severino also responded to the claim by White House Press Secretary that Biden is a ‘devout Catholic’: “It’s hard to square his proclamations of fidelity to Church teaching when he takes so many positions contrary to protecting both innocent human life and religious freedom, including the religious freedom of his own Church.” It seems the head of the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City, agrees with Severino’s assessment.
3. Great news from the Palmetto state—this week, the South Carolina legislature passed their version of the Heartbeat Bill, which Governor Henry McMaster could sign on Thursday. The Senate passed SB 1 and sent it to the House on Jan. 28. The House on Wednesday voted 79-35 to adopt the measure. Now yet another state is taking steps to protect the sanctity of life, although the South Carolina measure has exceptions for rape and incest, which Ohio’s Heartbeat Bill does not. One might wonder why Ohio’s Law is still languishing in the U.S. District Court. Perhaps Governor DeWine and Attorney General Dave Yost should give pro-life Ohioans an update on how soon we can expect our law to be upheld.
4. “The sun shines bright, both day and night”...deep in the heart of Goldsmith, Texas, a community which has become the nineteenth in the state to adopt an ordinance identifying the town as a “Sanctuary for the Unborn” and banning abortions within city limits. This initiative, spearheaded by the Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn initiative, helps local communities craft ordinances to be introduced in their council or commission meetings, like this one from Gary, Texas. Perhaps a local city council or county commission might consider this in Ohio and have their law director/legal team draft one up!
5. Canadian officials are calling out how online predators have had no down-time during the Covid lockdowns in the country. The Canadian Center for Child Protection, along with law enforcement agencies throughout the nation, note the incidents of “sextortion” of minors online has risen by 88 percent over this last year. Since Ohio has been in “Covid-hold” for a while, with schools being “virtual” in many areas, it might be a good idea to engage your children or grandchildren to make sure that they are safe online in this “new normal”.
Each installment of the Friday Five will bring thumbnail profiles of key
policymakers and committees.
Note: The following profiles are taken from official biographies found online.
United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio: Judge Douglas R. Cole— Judge Cole was nominated in May 2019 by President Donald J. Trump and confirmed by the Senate in December 2019. Born in Janesville, Wisconsin, Judge Cole has undergraduate degrees in electrical engineering, mathematics, and physics, and worked as an electrical engineer before attending law school. Judge Cole earned a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School, with High Honors and Order of the Coif; he was an Olin Fellow in Law and Economics, and was a member of the editorial board of the University of Chicago Law Review. He has served as a professor at the University of Oklahoma College of Law and at the Michael E. Moritz College of Law at The Ohio State University, where he taught in the fields of business law, law & economics, and intellectual property. From 2003-2006, he was the State Solicitor for the State of Ohio.
Ohio Senate, District 6 Senator Niraj Antani—the first-term Senator from Montgomery County served four terms in the Ohio House before advancing to the Senate. A strong conservative, Antani is a member of the NRA and has volunteered for Dayton Right to Life. He is a member of the Rotary Club of Miamisburg, and is a former executive board member of the non-profit Dayton International Festival, Inc. He has been the chair of the Ohio Republican Party Asian Pacific American Advisory Council and served on the national board of the Republican State Leadership Committee's Future Majority Project. Senator Antani has been appointed to the Senate Financial Institutions and Technology, Health, Judiciary, and Transportation committees. He has sponsored pro-life and pro-free speech legislation during his time in the Assembly.
The House districts that are part of the 6th Senate District are:
Ohio House District 40: Representative Phil Plummer—Plummer, the former Montgomery County Sheriff from 2008-2015, is serving his second term in the House. Rep. Plummer was born and raised in Montgomery County and lives in Dayton. He earned an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Toledo and a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from the University of Phoenix. He joined the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office in 1988 as a corrections officer, and worked his way up to sheriff. Plummer also brings unique experience to his office with executive training from the FBI National Academy, the FBI National Executive Institute, and the Secret Service Executive Leadership Academy. Representative Plummer has been appointed to the House Criminal Justice, Finance, Government Oversight, Health and Rules & Reference Committees. He has been a consistent pro-life vote during his first term in the Assembly.
Ohio House District 41: Representative Andrea White—Representative White is a freshman representative from the community of Kettering. She is no stranger to the Legislature, as her husband John served in the House from 2001-2008. The former Clerk of Courts for Kettering Municipal Court, White has served in the nonprofit sector and has owned small businesses. White helped found a community coalition addressing teen alcohol and drug prevention. Representative White has been appointed to the House Civil Justice, Criminal Justice, Government Oversight, and Health Committees.
Ohio House District 42: Representative Tom Young—Representative Young is a freshman representative from the community of Centerville. Young grew up in Miamisburg and has lived in his district all his life. Young, who holds a Bachelor’s degree in political science from Miami University of Ohio, is a wealth advisor in private practice. Young was appointed by former Governor Bob Taft to serve on the Board of Trustees at Wright State University from 2001 to 2010. He is also a founding member of Learn to Earn Dayton, an early learning initiative, and has been involved in numerous other community programs. He also has experience in the insurance industry and with criminal justice issues. Representative Young has been appointed to the House Health, Higher Education & Career Readiness, and Ways & Means Committees.
Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati is a proud member organization of the