Statement in Response to Gov. Cuomo’s Counsel

Published on February 26th, 2013

Yesterday, Mylan Denerstein, counsel to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, issued yet another essay defending the governor’s abortion expansion bill and accusing the opposition of being “outrageous and disingenuous.” In fact, the Catholic Bishops and other opponents have been very clear and honest in expressing opposition. And, yet again, she makes statements defending the substance of a bill that they have declined to make public.

While much of the essay repeats her previous assertions, she does add one new line of argument, insisting that the governor’s plan to allow non-physicians to perform abortions would not change existing law. She states, “New York State law and regulations currently allow non-physician medical professionals (e.g. physician assistants) to perform the procedure in certain circumstances. Again, there is no change to that whatsoever.”

In fact, New York State law specifically says that only a “duly licensed physician” may perform an abortion. The bill known as the Reproductive Health Act (S.438) specifically repeals that language and replaces it with “licensed health care practitioner,” a category much broader than physician. Further, there are no regulations of which we are aware that would or could override that very clear language in the state’s Penal Law.

Is Ms. Denerstein being intentionally misleading or is she actually aware of physician assistants performing surgical induced abortions despite the clear prohibition in the Penal Law?

We invite her to clarify her remarks, and we respectfully ask her to reveal where these abortions by physician assistants are being performed in New York State and explain to health care consumers exactly how this could possibly be legal under existing state law.

It is becoming clear that the governor will eventually release a bill that contains changes to bills previously introduced. It is also clear, given the intentionally confusing language of Ms. Denerstein’s statements, that the ultimate bill will be intended to be as misleading as her statements have been. We will not be caught off guard and we do not believe the members of the Legislature, which has not accepted the previous versions of this bill, will be either.

The Catholic Conference represents New York State’s Bishops in matters of public policy.

8 Responses to “Statement in Response to Gov. Cuomo’s Counsel”

Earl Roberts says:

How can you make schools safe if Catholic schools are omitted from the gun control bill? I pay taxes, and my children go to catholic schools and it amazes me that you are saying that my children should not be protected by this act. Is my children’s safety a luxury too? like my health insurance? These are not luxuries, but necessities and you guys need to wake up and do what this bill is intended to do- PROTECT CHILDREN ‘ALL’.


Nancy E. Lemons says:

I disagree with Gov. Cuomo, My problem is a young lady,ages 13,14,15 can get abortions with out the parents knowledge done by a non-physicians. We read all the time how many so called health practitoner with no papers. The sad part is they can’t vote we fell the are not old enough to make a decision. It is a crime if they are rape by a older person. I believe when the laws are written the laws on the books are not checked. This is very wrong we should get teaching for kids and if the parents can’t do it then they should be sent to a professional. thank you Nancy.

Dennis Kaser says:

Gevernor Cuomo, my fellow Catholic–Why must you place yourself above the teachings of the faith and the considered judgment of our holy fathers? I urge you to use your office to promote a culture of life and enhancement of the dignity of all persons from conception to natural death. Lent is a time for you to change!

Ed Silk says:

Gov. Cuomo,

You are trying to sneak through a bill to expand abortion because you wouldn’t be able to get it passed on its own. Your a gutless sneak trying to pacify your liberal contingent which you are counting on to win your next election. How do you sleep at night?

Ed Silk

Kevin Mcgill says:

If Gov.Cuomo wanted to make it safer for our children he would do away with abortion and prosecute criminals .
” Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people . It is wholly inadequate to the goverment of any other.” John Adams The Safe Act and Abortion is wrong .

Fadi Helou,Ron Byington says:

Dear Governor Cuomo, We would like to Share with all our concerned friends our opinion about this abortion bill ,That can lead the general population in thinking that its alright to kill innocent babys in the womb .
No one should be allowed to decide who lives and who dies except the Almighty.
Why we dont give a chance for this child to live and sit with us in the same room,in the future sharing his own opinion about abortion ,Guns in our streets .etc
He can be somebody in good condition to support us against any unfair new law .
Thank you ,God bless USA….

annette vita says:

please examin your conscience and save all the little babies that will killed by your actions. Look at your own children an d see what you will be distroying by this this bill. All children have the right to be born. Establish an agency for the adoption of the babies whoes parents don’ wantthem. Help couples who desperately want a baby easer to accomplish. Mother of five,all wanted and loved. Lovoing adultsnow

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