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Colorado Senate Judiciary Committee

March 17, 2022: HB22-1279 – Reproductive Health Equity Act

“Thank you, Chairman and esteemed members of the committee. I am Jorge Rodriguez, the Auxiliary Bishop of Denver.

Today your vote on HB 1279 Reproductive Health Equity Act will carry incalculable consequences on uncountable lives of children and mothers.

Colorado should be striving to promote a Culture of Life, not one of death through killing children in the womb. In 2020, 1.3 million Coloradans voted to prohibit abortion when a child could survive outside the womb with modern science. According to a 2020 survey, even more Coloradans oppose on-demand abortion for the full 40 weeks of pregnancy. But HB 1279 will permit abortion in state law up to the moment of birth. Unbelievable.

As Auxiliary Bishop of Denver, I work closely with the Hispanic community. And I am myself a Hispanic and an Immigrant!

Whatever it has been said here, the Hispanic community is a Pro-life community!. Life, children and family are the great values and treasures of our culture and people. This is how we live, so we bring it with us to the United States. Thus, we hope to pass these values on to our children.

2019 survey conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute found that most Hispanics who said they were affiliated with a religion were also pro-life, including 58 percent of Hispanic Protestants and 52 percent of Hispanic Catholics. The data shows that Hispanics born outside the U.S. are even more less likely to support abortion with 59 percent opposing abortion.

Hispanics are the only race or ethnicity where a majority of respondents thought that abortion should be illegal in all or most cases.

Census data show that as of July 2021, 5.8 million Hispanics live in Colorado. Nearly 10 percent of Colorado Hispanics are immigrants. With a growing Hispanic population, why is the Colorado General Assembly introducing the most extreme abortion legislation in the country?

The Catholic Church objects to abortion on the principle that every human life has inherent dignity, and thus must be treated with the respect due to a human person. This is the foundation of the Church’s social doctrine, which is why it is the preeminent issue and the core of social justice principles.

I beg the committee to vote “NO” on House Bill HB22-1279 Reproductive Health Equity Act (RHEA).

Thank you for your time.”