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Catholics unite against RH bill lawmakers

Lay groups campaign against Congressmen who passed the law reporter, Manila

December 14, 2012

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Disgruntled Catholic lay groups yesterday launched a movement that will campaign in elections against politicians supporting the controversial Reproductive Health (RH) bill.

"There will be a Catholic vote in 2013. We will deliver it through our membership and from among our fellow parishioners," said Dr Ricardo Boncan, a group spokesman.

Anna Cosio, another movement spokesperson, said the group will conduct voter education programs and spell out criteria for electing national and local officials, such as having "high Christian moral standards, sound judgment, integrity, honor, dignity and independence."

Organizers said the new movement, Catholic Vote Philippines, was prompted by the government’s "apparent resolve to pass ‘anti-family’ laws in Congress, the most prominent of which is the RH bill."

The House of Representatives yesterday ignored Church protests and passed the bill that will allow artificial contraception as a family planning method if it becomes law.

The country’s upper house, the Senate, is due to vote on the bill next week.

The movement, initiated by the Couples for Christ, the Knights of Columbus and the Catholic Women’s League, said it would fight against all proposed laws dealing with population control, divorce and same sex marriage.

Mid-term polls to elect local leaders and members of Congress are scheduled to take place in May next year.

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