Protect Unborn Life and Family Formation

Policy Priorities

Protect Unborn Life and Family Formation

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All children conceived deserve to be born to married mothers and fathers who will love, guide, and protect them throughout their lives, but family breakdown and rampant abortion have torn apart the soul of our country and sapped it of its strength and moral authority. Radical ideologies that deny social and biological truths about sexual embodiment, marriage, and unborn life have poisoned our courts, our culture, and our laws. The Heritage enterprise will mobilize and advance policies at the state and federal levels to restore the nuclear family to the center of American life and reduce both the demand for and availability of abortion at all stages of human development. 

The Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization that overturned Roe v. Wade was merely the end of the beginning of the abortion debate in America, and pro-life conservatives have more work to do to protect life than ever before. We will defend the court victory by advancing pro-life legislation in the states and at the federal level and blocking the Democrats’ efforts to enshrine abortion on demand in federal law. The steps outlined below represent significant progress toward these goals that can be achieved even in a divided government. 

The Heritage enterprise will protect unborn life.

We will advance the Heartbeat Protection Act to prohibit abortion nationwide after the moment a heartbeat can be detected. At the state level, we will work with governors, legislators, and other state-based allies to pass heartbeat laws (or better) on abortion.

We will work to prohibit the interstate commerce of abortion pills in pro-life states by advancing legislation in both the House and Senate. 

We will encourage Congress to continue the current prohibitions on the federal taxpayer funding of abortions both at home and abroad and to continue the Weldon Amendment that protects health care providers who decline to provide, pay for, or refer patients for abortions. We will work to pass legislation in the House to enshrine the conscience protections of the Weldon Amendment permanently in law. 

We will work to delay Department of Health and Human Services regulations that would rescind pro-life conscience protections for health care workers. We will accomplish this by filing thoroughly researched, substantive comments and objections from our Heritage experts that will require substantive responses from HHS. 

We will advance a bill to require foreign nongovernmental organizations to agree not to perform or promote abortion as a condition of receiving U.S. funding. For those foreign NGOs that refuse to comply, the bill would redirect their funding to other organizations that respect innocent human life.

We also will work with Congress to ensure that there is an investigation into the Department of Justice’s refusal to protect Supreme Court justices who faced illegal protests and threats after the Dobbs abortion decision was prematurely leaked and the department’s refusal to investigate concurrent vandalism and threats to pro-life pregnancy centers. 

We will fight efforts to force Americans to conform to radical sexual orientation and gender ideology. 

We will fight to reverse the current bipartisan momentum in Congress for bills that would force Americans to conform to radical sexual orientation and gender ideology.

Additionally, we will work to delay and have enjoined by a court Department of Health and Human Services regulations that would replace the biological understanding of sex discrimination in health care with one based on subjective gender ideology. We will accomplish this by filing thoroughly researched, substantive comments and objections from our Heritage experts that will require substantive responses from HHS. 

At the state level, we will work to develop and promote legislation and governors’ executive actions to prohibit transgender surgeries on—and the distribution of puberty-blocking drugs to—children. We will also work to establish protections for the health and mental well-being of children experiencing or being counseled for gender dysphoria. 

We will promote strong family formation. 

Heritage will promote pro-family welfare reforms that support work and marriage by introducing a comprehensive Heritage family policy proposal with significant and detailed recommendations that lawmakers can use to guide reform efforts. 

Heritage provides the knowledge resources to equip lawmakers, activists, and communities with the information they need to protect unborn life and family formation. Select studies from our experts can be found below: 

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