On Sunday, the 2015-2016 state legislative session finally came to a close. I was there on Saturday, helping to lead a pro-family Lobby Day for one last opportunity to make our voices heard. I am happy to say that the last two bills we were fighting against both failed to even get voted on. Here’s a quick recap on the four major bills we’ve been telling you about for the past 18 months:
Doctor-Prescribed Suicide [Victory]: This bill would have decriminalized physician-assisted suicide. It was “sent to study” a month ago, which was a way of “killing” the bill without voting on it. This is good news. However, we fully anticipate that assisted suicide activists, whose national group is called “Compassion and Choices,” will seek to put their legislation on the November 2018 ballot in Massachusetts. They were narrowly defeated at the polls in 2012 and are required by law to wait six years before bringing the same issue to a statewide vote again. We are working with our local and national partners to prepare for this fight.
Sexual Orientation Counseling Ban [Victory]: This bill would have prevented children from receiving much needed counseling to help them respond proactively to unwanted sexual desires or gender confusion. The counseling ban legislation was one of two bills that still hadn’t made it to a vote when the legislative clock ran out Sunday night. While we are grateful that this bill failed and were able to preserve the rights of families to seek the counseling they desire, this type of legislation is a growing problem throughout the country. Over the past two years, Oregon and Illinois have enacted similar bills, and Vermont did as well just this past spring. We will continue to educate and advocate against this type of state infringement on religious freedom, free speech and parental rights.
Sex Ed Mandate [Victory]: This bill would impose a state-wide, one-size-fits all comprehensive sex-education requirement on our public schools. We ordered many of the curricula that are certified by the state as meeting the proposed requirements, and they contain highly offensive materials and graphic depictions of “non-reproductive sex acts.” Similar legislation has been proposed for years, but this past session was the first time that it passed in the state senate. Fortunately, we were able to arm several pro-family representatives with the scandalous details of this bill, and it never even came up for a vote in the house. The bill is, not surprisingly, heavily promoted by Planned Parenthood, and they are also the creators of one of the main curricula that would be implemented. Defeating this bill was an indirect setback for the abortion giant and a win for parents, children, teachers and local school committees.
Transgender Bathroom Bill [Defeat – for now]: This bill was signed into law by Governor Baker July 8, 2016. In doing so, he violated his earlier campaign promises to veto this type of legislation. As of October 1, 2016 when the law goes into full effect, public accommodations must allow men to use women’s bathrooms, changing rooms, locker rooms and showers. But this fight IS NOT OVER. On July 18, 20 pro-family patriots and I signed a petition to REPEAL this law by voting it down on the November 2018 ballot. We’ve launched a campaign to gather the additional 32,374 signatures needed to put this law to a statewide vote. The signature petitions were just printed YESTERDAY. Please go to KeepMAsafe.org to volunteer to collect signatures or find out where you can sign.
Thank you to everyone who called, emailed, wrote letters and visited with their legislators. Together, we are making a difference for our families and the Commonwealth!
For our families,