Council may shift stand on abortion
At least one and possibly two resolutions are to be debated today to reject last week's "pro-choice" vote.
By Patrick Kerkstra
Inquirer Staff Writer
There will be at least one and possibly two votes in today's busy Council session attacking the abortion-rights designation, which was condemned last week by Cardinal Justin Rigali despite the fact that it augured no actual change in
Sponsored by Democratic Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown, the resolution states that
It passed by an unusually narrow 9-8 margin, making
Republican Councilman Frank Rizzo, who opposed last week's measure, will ask Council to vote on a new resolution rescinding the "pro-choice" declaration.
A separate resolution written by Republican Councilman Brian O'Neill emphasizes tolerance of "all schools of opinion" and declares
Of the two counter-resolutions, Rizzo's is far harsher. It describes Brown's proclamation as "divisive," and "a waste of City Council's time and effort." It claims last week's resolution "accomplishes nothing, except to pander to a special interest group," and even takes a shot at its margin of victory, calling the 9-8 vote a "pathetically narrow majority."
"I figure this is something you can't really mince words about," Rizzo said. "I've been in this business a while now, but rarely have I seen more people outraged by what happened in our Council chamber."
Brown criticized the "provocative language and tenor" of Rizzo's resolution, and said there was a "way to advance your position while respecting other views."
But Brown said she planned to support O'Neill's resolution. When asked if that signaled a retreat from her position of last week, Brown said she would address the matter publicly at today's Council session.
O'Neill could not be reached for comment.
In addition to the debate over
Contact staff writer Patrick Kerkstra at 215-854-2827 or firstname.lastname@example.org.