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Nadler Outraged Over Republican Misrepresentation

Washington, DC, April 26, 2005
Congressman asks “what next – they get to write our speeches?”
Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) today lashed out at congressional Republicans for their deliberate mischaracterization of Democratic amendments to a pending bill.  At issue was the official House Judiciary Committee report on the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act (CIANA), which construed Democratic amendments as intending to protect sexual predators. The report will serve as an official summary of the bill.

Congressman Nadler had offered an amendment that would exempt a minor’s grandparent or adult sibling from penalty under CIANA.  But the Judiciary Committee Republicans summarized the amendment this way in their official report:

Mr. Nadler offered an amendment that would have exempted sexual predators from prosecution under the bill if they were grandparents or adult siblings of a minor.[1]

The Nadler amendment was in no way written to shelter sexual predators, as members of the Judiciary Committee and their staff well know.

“This is truly outrageous, and a gross abuse of power,” Congressman Nadler said.  “The authors of this report suggest that they described my amendment in accordance with its possible effect, but if that’s true, consider this:

Under CIANA, a father who rapes and impregnates his own daughter can go and sue the doctor or the grandparent or the clergyman who transported his child across state lines for the purpose of getting an abortion.  Maybe that wasn’t exactly the intent of this legislation.  But according to the descriptive guidelines now laid out by the majority, it would therefore be fair to call this entire bill the Rapists and Sexual Predators Right to Sue Act.

“The Republicans are trying to determine which words the Democrats get to use to describe their own amendments.  What next – they get to write our speeches?”


[1] House Report 109-051, p. 46

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