WASHINGTON (February 1, 2006)—An official of the Pro-Life Secretariat of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) expressed support for "Holly's Law" (H.R. 1079), legislation to suspend FDA approval of the drug RU-486.
"The Bishops' Conference strongly supports Holly's Law," said Deirdre A. McQuade, Director of Planning and Information at the Pro-Life Secretariat. "We oppose every abortion as the innocent taking of human life. But the RU-486 method compounds this offense by also threatening the lives and well-being of women."
Ms. McQuade, along with representatives of other organizations supporting "Holly's Law," spoke at a press conference (February 1) sponsored by Congressman Roscoe Bartlett and other Congressional supporters of the legislation.
"Holly's Law is a very modest bill," she continued. "It provides only for temporary suspension of the Food and Drug Administration's approval of RU-486 so the Comptroller General can review that agency's adherence to statutory mandates in its process for approving the drug.
"If supporters of RU-486 believe the FDA followed the law in approving RU-486 for abortion, they should have nothing to fear from the proposed review," Ms. McQuade stated. "But if the FDA bent the rules to expedite approval of RU-486, the agency clearly valued the 'health' of the abortion industry over women's health and should be brought to account."
"After five years of trauma and death associated with RU-486, the FDA's response has been limited to one health advisory and amended drug labeling. How many more women must die before we take a close second look at RU-486?" she asked.
"Women deserve far better from their federal government," Ms. McQuade said. "We urge Congressional leadership to bring this measure to a vote at the earliest opportunity."
Holly's Law is named in memory of Holly Patterson, a young California woman who had barely turned 18 when she died from toxic shock after being given RU-486. Eight women in the United States are reported to have died after RU-486 abortions.
Other organizations participating in the press conference included Concerned Women for America, Susan B. Anthony List, Family Research Council, National Right to Life Committee, and Democrats for Life.