Category Archives: Press Releases

Federal Judge Denies Planned Parenthood of Indiana Restraining Order

WASHINGTON – Today, the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of 50 state right-to-life affiliates, applauded the decision of U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt to deny a request by Planned Parenthood of Indiana for a  temporary restraining order against a new Indiana law that denies state-directed funding for businesses and organizations performing abortions in the state.  Judge Pratt’s order allows the funding cuts passed by the Indiana legislature and signed by Governor Mitch Daniels earlier this month to immediately take effect.

 “Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest provider and promoter of abortion,” said National Right to Life President Carol Tobias.  “As Planned Parenthood’s government funding increased so did the number of abortions they performed.” 

 According to Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s annual report for 2008-2009, which reported over $1 billion in revenues, the amount it received in “Government Grants & Contracts” has gone from $165 million in 1998 to $363.3 million in the organization’s fiscal year ending June 30, 2009.  During the same time, and at roughly the same rate, abortions have more than doubled at Planned Parenthood, from 165,509 in 1998 to 332,278 in 2009.  With just over 1.2 million abortions performed annually nationwide, abortions done in Planned Parenthood clinics account for more than 25% of the national total.

 “Using the average estimates for the cost of a first-trimester abortion ($451), Planned Parenthood clinics derived more than one-third ($149.9 million) of their reported $404.9 million in income from abortions in 2008-2009,” Tobias noted.

 National Right to Life Director of Education and Research Randall K. O’Bannon, Ph.D., has done extensive research and reporting on Planned Parenthood’s abortion business.  His two most recent analyses can be found here:

 “While other businesses and non-profit organizations struggled during the recession, Planned Parenthood’s bottom line continued to swell,” Tobias added. “The bottom line is, taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to underwrite Planned Parenthood and its affiliates.”

 The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of 50 state right-to-life organizations and more than 3,000 local chapters nationwide, is the nation’s largest pro-life group. National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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U.S. House Passes Permanent Ban on Federal Funding of Abortion

WASHINGTON – The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the nationwide federation of right-to-life organizations, today commended the 251 members of the U.S. House of Representatives who voted to pass the landmark No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act (H.R. 3), but directed sharp criticism at President Obama and at the 175 House members (all of them Democrats) who voted against the bill.

“There are over one million Americans who are alive today because of the Hyde Amendment policy – but President Obama, although he claims to seek abortion reduction, continues to work against that policy,” said NRLC Legislative Director Douglas Johnson.  “The White House veto threat demonstrates yet again that President Obama is determined to expand federal subsidies for abortion on demand – despite his verbal smokescreens.  The 175 House Democrats who voted against the bill will be firmly marked as supporters of federal subsidies for elective abortion.” 

The bill was supported by 235 Republicans and 16 Democrats.  It was opposed by 175 Democrats.

In a candid opinion piece titled “Time to Stand Up for Abortion Funding,” published today on a blog operated by The Hill, a Capitol Hill newspaper, Jessica Arons – who is director of the Women’s Health and Rights Program at the Center for American Progress (a nonprofit organization with very close ties to the Obama White House) – called on pro-abortion members of Congress to drop the pretext that they do not seek to establish federal funding of abortion.  “First, stop referring to the Hyde Amendment as an ‘historic compromise’ or ‘settled law’,” Arons advised.  “Such language only reinforces the misconception that abortion funding restrictions are necessary and proper. They are not. . . . .  Finally, mount a full-throated defense of public funding for abortion – or rather of comprehensive health care that includes abortion coverage, regardless of the funding source.”   (http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/politics/159173-time-to-stand-up-for-abortion-funding)

For many years, federal funding of abortion has been limited by a patchwork of laws – many of which expire annually, because they are incorporated into annual appropriations bills.  The best known is the Hyde Amendment, but this law applies only to funds that flow through the annual Health and Human Services appropriations bill, and it expires annually.  The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) (“Obamacare”), enacted in 2010, opened new pipelines for federal funding of abortion, which are not governed by the Hyde Amendment or any other statutory restriction (see http://www.nrlc.org/AHC/ProtectLifeActDouglasJohnsonTestimony.pdf).  H.R. 3 would codify the principles of the Hyde Amendment on a permanent, government-wide basis, applicable to both longstanding federal health programs and to the new programs created by the PPACA.

Further details on specific components of H.R. 3, including conscience protections for pro-life health care providers and a provision applying to the District of Columbia, are found in NRLC’s May 3 letter to the House of Representatives (http://www.nrlc.org/AHC/NRLCLetterToHouseOnHR3.pdf), and in a Q&A factsheet issued by the office of Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ), the prime sponsor of H.R. 3 (http://chrissmith.house.gov/UploadedFiles/2011_Q_and_A.pdf).

 The National Right to Life Committee is the nation’s largest pro-life group with affiliates in all 50 states and over 3,000 local chapters nationwide. National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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OK Becomes 4th State to Enact Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

WASHINGTON – Today, Oklahoma became the fourth state to enact legislation that protects from abortion unborn children who are capable of feeling pain.. Oklahoma joins Kansas and Idaho this year, and Nebraska last year. Meanwhile, an Alabama Senate committee held a hearing today on a similar measure that has already passed that state’s House of Representatives.

 “Modern medical science provides substantial compelling evidence that unborn children recoil from painful stimuli, that their stress hormones increase when they are subjected to any painful stimuli, and that they require anesthesia for fetal surgery,” said Mary Spaulding Balch, J.D., director of state legislation for the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC).  “Therefore, the states have a compelling interest in protecting unborn children who are capable of feeling pain from abortion. Oklahoma is the fourth state to recognize this obligation by enacting the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.”

 At a bill-signing ceremony today, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin signed into law two pro-life bills – HB 1888, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, and SB 547, the Abortion-Is-Not-Health-Care bill .

 SB 547 prohibits coverage for elective abortions under health-insurance plans in Oklahoma, affirms the principle that abortion is not health care, and protects the conscience rights of pro-life premium payers so they’re not complicit in the killing of unborn children.

 The Oklahoma House, led by Representative Pam Peterson, passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Protection bill with a vote of 85-7.  Oklahoma’s Senate, led by Senator Clark Jolley, passed the bill by a vote of 38-8.

 As drafted by National Right to Life’s state legislation department, the model Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act protects from abortion unborn children who are capable of feeling pain except when the mother “has a condition which so complicates her medical condition as to necessitate the abortion of her pregnancy to avert death or to avert serious risk of substantial or irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function or…it is necessary to preserve the life of an unborn child.”

 Further documentation and links to the scientific studies can be found at: www.doctorsonfetalpain.com.

 “We commend Representative Pam Peterson, Senator Clark Jolley, and Governor Mary Fallin for their actions in protecting unborn children and helping their mothers through enactment of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” added Tony Lauinger, State Chairman of Oklahomans for Life and Executive Vice-President of the National Right to Life Committee.

 The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of 50 state right-to-life organizations and more than 3,000 local chapters nationwide, is the nation’s largest pro-life group. National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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ID Gov Signs Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

WASHINGTON – Today, Idaho Governor C. L. “Butch” Otter signed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, making Idaho the third state to protect from abortion the life of the pain-capable child. Idaho’s Senate, led by Senator Chuck Winder, passed this historic bill by the impressive vote of 24-10. The House, led by Rep. Brent Crane and Rep. Lynn Luker passed it by the overwhelming vote of 54-14.

“Solid medical research substantiates the fact that unborn children recoil from painful stimuli, experience increased stress hormones when subjected to pain, and require anesthesia when undergoing fetal surgery,” said Mary Spaulding Balch, J.D., director of state legislation for the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC). “We commend Idaho for joining Nebraska and Kansas in recognizing their compelling interest in protecting from abortion the unborn child who is capable of feeling pain.”

As drafted by National Right to Life’s state legislation department, the model Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act protects from abortion unborn children who are capable of feeling pain except when the mother “has a condition which so complicates her medical condition as to necessitate the abortion of her pregnancy to avert death or to avert serious risk of substantial or irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function or…it is necessary to preserve the life of an unborn child.”

Further documentation and links to the scientific studies can be found at: www.doctorsonfetalpain.com.

Continuing the trend among the states in passing pro-life legislation, further action during the state legislative session on the model Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act is expected in Alabama, Minnesota and Oklahoma, among others.

“Over the past several years, we have seen an increasing number of state legislatures concerned with protecting the lives of unborn children and their mothers,” added Spaulding Balch.  “We are encouraged to see the trend continuing this year with passage of laws like the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.”

The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of 50 state right-to-life organizations and more than 3,000 local chapters nationwide, is the nation’s largest pro-life group. National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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Brownback Signs Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

Kansas becomes second state to enact NRLC model legislation

 WASHINGTON – At a signing ceremony in Topeka this afternoon, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act into law.  Sponsored by state Rep. Lance Kinzer, the law passed the Kansas House of Representatives 91-30, in February.  The state Senate granted approval, 24-15, in late March.  The law, modeled after National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) draft language enacted by the Nebraska legislature last year, was a legislative priority for Kansans for Life, NRLC’s state affiliate.

 “Modern medical science provides substantial evidence that unborn children recoil from painful stimuli, that their stress hormones increase, and that they require anesthesia for fetal surgery,” said Mary Spaulding Balch, J.D., NRLC director of state legislation.  “Therefore, the states have a compelling interest in protecting unborn children who are capable of feeling pain from abortion. Kansas is the second state to recognize this obligation by enacting the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, but we expect Idaho and Oklahoma to follow within days – and other state legislatures will be voting on similar bills this year.”

Originally drafted by NRLC’s state legislation department, the model Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act protects unborn children who are capable of feeling pain from abortion except when the mother “has a condition which so complicates her medical condition as to necessitate the abortion of her pregnancy to avert death or to avert serious risk of substantial or irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function or…it is necessary to preserve the life of an unborn child.” 

 Further documentation and links to the scientific studies can be found at: www.doctorsonfetalpain.com.

 Kansas becomes the second state to make the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act law.  Idaho and Oklahoma have also passed the law this spring and the measures are currently awaiting signatures by governors in both states.  The legislation has also been introduced in Alabama (where it has already passed the state House of Representatives), Minnesota and Oregon.

 The Kansas law can be found here:

http://kslegislature.org/li/b2011_12/year1/measures/documents/hb2218_enrolled.pdf

 “Rep. Kinzer and Gov. Brownback are to be commended for their efforts to protect unborn children and help their mothers with enactment of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” added Alan Hansen, O.D., president of the Kansans for Life Board of Directors.

 The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of 50 state right-to-life organizations and more than 3,000 local chapters nationwide, is the nation’s largest pro-life group. National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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Carol Tobias Elected NRLC President

Carol Tobias, NRLC President

CAROL TOBIAS ELECTED NATIONAL RIGHT TO LIFE PRESIDENT

Becomes the organization’s 8th president since Roe v. Wade 

WASHINGTON — On Saturday, April 9, Carol Tobias was elected president of the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the national federation of 50 state affiliates and more than 3,000 local chapters.  Tobias, who becomes the 8th NRLC president since Roe v. Wade, succeeds Wanda Franz, Ph.D. of West Virginia.

“I am extremely humbled and honored to be elected president by the National Right to Life board, which represents our nationwide network of state affiliates and local chapters,” said Mrs. Tobias.  “As the late pro-life Congressman Henry Hyde of Illinois said, National Right to Life ‘is the flagship of the pro-life movement.’  I’m looking forward to the opportunity to help our pro-life network in its continuing effort to educate the public and pass laws protecting mothers and their unborn children.”

A native of North Dakota, Tobias has served on the NRLC board of directors since 1987.  From 1983 to 1991 she was executive director of North Dakota Right to Life and in 1991 was hired as NRLC political director, a position she held until 2005.  During her tenure as NRLC political director, pro-life majorities were elected to both the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate.  In both 2000 and 2004, she oversaw the efforts of NRLC’s political action committee on behalf of George W. Bush.

Mrs. Tobias was elected by the NRLC board of directors at its spring board meeting.  The board of directors is comprised of representatives from each of NRLC’s 50 state affiliates and 8 directors elected at-large.  NRLC is the nation’s pro-life organization which is representative of the country’s grassroots pro-life citizens and activists.

 “The pro-life movement is the greatest social cause of our time,” added Tobias.  “I am eager to continue National Right to Life’s educational, legislative and political efforts to advance the right to life of the most vulnerable members of our human family – the unborn, the elderly, and the medically dependent and disabled.”

 Other officers and executive committee members elected at the spring board meeting include: Executive Vice-President: Anthony J. Lauinger of Oklahoma; Vice-President for International Affairs: Jeanne E. Head, R.N. of New York; Vice-President for Medical Ethics: John Wayne Cockfield, USMC Ret. of South Carolina; Secretary: Holly Gatling of South Carolina; Treasurer: Rev. Dennis C. Day of Idaho; Chairman of the Board: Hon. Geline B. Williams of Virginia; Vice-Chairman of the Board: Hon. Lynda Bell of Florida; and Chet Rucinski of Wisconsin.

 The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of 50 state right-to-life organizations and more than 3,000 local chapters nationwide, is the nation’s largest pro-life group. National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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Proposed Constitution in Kenya Allows Abortion on Demand

WASHINGTON — Media reports regarding the proposed constitution in Kenya, which goes before the country for a vote on Wednesday, continue to misrepresent the proposed document’s impact on the country’s abortion policy. 

“Many in the media are falsely reporting that the new constitution would not allow abortion except ‘where the life of the mother is in danger,’” explained Jeanne E. Head, R.N., National Right to Life Vice President for International Affairs and United Nations Representative.  “The truth is actually the opposite.”

The language in the proposed constitution does not contain any meaningful restrictions on abortion, despite recognition of the right to life from conception. Section 26 contains language which allows abortion when in the “opinion of a trained health professional, there is need for emergency treatment, or the life or health of the mother is in danger, or if permitted by any other written law.”

This is a reversal of previous Kenyan law on abortion which required the opinion of two medical doctors who were in agreement that an abortion was necessary to save the life of the mother.

The  broad “health” exceptions in the proposed constitution would essentially mean abortion on demand.  A similar health exception was used in the United States Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton decisions. Those rulings gave the United States a policy of legal abortion for virtually any reason throughout the entire length of pregnancy. The result has been the death of more than 52 million unborn children in the United States since 1973.

In New York state which allows state funding of  so-called ‘medically necessary’ abortions, unlike the federal government and most states, the result is between 43,000 and 52,000 state-funded abortions of unborn children every year.

An amendment to the Kenyan constitution was proposed that would have replaced the current pro-abortion language with language to allow medical procedures necessary to prevent the death of a pregnant woman. In those very rare cases, the mother can usually be saved in a manner that also gives the child a chance to survive.

“As an obstetric nurse who cared for women delivering their babies for more than 44 years, I can say I never saw a case in which it was necessary to directly attack and kill the unborn child to protect the health of the mother,” Head noted.

International law does not require that countries legalize abortion, despite attempts by some to establish abortion as a fundamental right worldwide. No country is required to legalize abortion under any international treaty or conference.

“The reason we have not seen a significant decrease in maternal mortality is not because some countries haven’t legalized abortion,” Head added. “The problem is that valuable resources have been directed toward promoting abortion and decreasing the number of children women deliver, rather than making the delivery of their children safe.”

A wealth of evidence shows conclusively that the key to reducing maternal mortality is not to legalize abortion, but rather to improve nutrition, basic health care, prenatal care, and good basic and emergency obstetric care.

“If approved, the new constitution would legalize abortion in Kenya, which would dramatically increase the number of abortions and lead to more women hurt and unborn children killed, just as Roe v. Wade has done in the U.S.,” Head concluded.

Jeanne E. Head, R.N. is available to provide further comment and analysis on the proposed Kenyan constitution from National Right to Life’s New York office.  To arrange an interview, contact the NRLC Communications Department at (202) 626-8825 or email mediarelations@nrlc.org.

The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) is the nation’s largest pro-life group with affiliates in all 50 states and over 3,000 local chapters nationwide.   

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NRLC Urges U.S. House to Reject “DISCLOSE Act”

For immediate release:                                        
Thursday, May 27, 2010             

NATIONAL RIGHT TO LIFE COMMITTEE URGES U.S. HOUSE TO REJECT “DISCLOSE ACT” AS “A CORRUPTION OF THE LAWMAKING POWER”

WASHINGTON (May 27, 2010) — The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of right-to-life organizations in all 50 states, today urged the U.S. House of Representatives to reject the “DISCLOSE Act” (H.R. 5175), which it called a “bullying political power grab,” which is “not a curb on corruption, but itself a type of corruption — a corruption of the lawmaking process, by which incumbent lawmakers employ the threat of criminal sanctions, among other deterrents, to reduce the amount of private speech regarding the actions of the lawmakers themselves.”  NRLC said that it would include the dispositive roll calls on the measure in its scorecard of key votes for the current Congress.

 The four-page letter, signed by NRLC Executive Director David N. O’Steen and Legislative Director Douglas Johnson, said that the bill “has been carefully crafted to maximize short-term political benefits for the dominant faction of one political party, while running roughshod over the First Amendment protections for political speech that have been clearly and forcefully articulated by the U.S. Supreme Court.”  The letter discusses a number of ways in which the legislation is designed to “to discourage, as much as possible, disfavored groups (such as NRLC) from communicating about officeholders, by exposing citizens who support such efforts to harassment and intimidation, and by smothering organizations in layer on layer of record keeping and reporting requirements, all backed by the threat of civil and criminal sanctions.”  The letter suggests that the bill be amended to clarify that “DISCLOSE” actually stands for “Deterring Independent Speech about Congress except by Labor Organizations and Selected Elites.”

 The House Democratic leadership had apparently intended to bring the bill to the House floor tomorrow (May 28), but — faced by a rising chorus of protests from a broad array of organizations — has now postponed floor action until the week of June 7.

 The letter is available here: http://nrlcomm.wordpress.com/2010/05/27/discloseletter

 NRLC Legislative Director Douglas Johnson  and Senior Legislative Counsel Susan T.  Muskett, J.D. are available to provide comment and analysis of the “DISCLOSE Act.”  Please contact the NRLC Communications Department at (202) 626-8825 to arrange an interview.

 The National Right to Life Committee is the nation’s largest pro-life group, with affiliates in all 50 states and over 3,000 local chapters nationwide. 

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Rep. John Boehner to Headline NRLC Convention

For immediate release:
Thursday, May 27, 2010                                                                                     

HOUSE REPUBLICAN LEADER TO SPEAK AT RIGHT TO LIFE CONVENTION

WASHINGTON — Today the National Right to Life Committee, the federation of 50 state right-to-life groups and more than 3,000 local chapters, announced that House Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio will headline a Saturday morning general session at the annual National Right to Life Convention in June.  In addition, Mr. Boehner will receive the National Right to Life Legislative Leadership Award.

 “Congressman John Boehner has been an outspoken supporter of the most vulnerable members of our society,” said National Right to Life Co-Executive Director Darla St. Martin.  “Throughout the battle over President Obama’s health care bill, Leader Boehner worked tirelessly to defend the rights of unborn children, the elderly, and the medically dependent and disabled.”

 Mr. Boehner’s address and award presentation will take place at 10:30 a.m., Saturday, June 26, 2010 at the Hyatt Regency Pittsburgh International Airport.  The session is part of the annual National Right to Life Convention which annually brings together more than 800 grassroots pro-life activists from across the country.  The three-day convention features five general sessions, more than 60 workshops, annual Prayer Breakfast and closing banquet.  The convention was last held in Pittsburgh in 2002.

 “We are thrilled that Leader Boehner will join us for this year’s National Right to Life Convention,” added St. Martin.  “His dedication to our great cause will be an inspiration to everyone in attendance.”

 Credentialed journalists interested in covering any part of the three-day convention, including the Saturday morning general session must pre-register with the National Right to Life Communications Department.  For more information, contact Derrick Jones or Jessica Rodgers at (202) 626-8825.  

 The National Right to Life Committee is the nation’s largest pro-life group with affiliates in all 50 states and over 3,000 local chapters nationwide.  National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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Obama Perpetuates Abortion Funding Myth in Joint Address

For immediate release:                                        
Wednesday, September 9, 2009, 9:30pm   

OBAMA PERPETUATES ABORTION FUNDING MYTH
IN JOINT SESSION ADDRESS

 WASHINGTON – In his address to a joint session of Congress tonight, President Obama said, “One more misunderstanding I want to clear up — under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions.”

 Douglas Johnson, legislative director for the National Right to Life Committee, commented: “Barack Obama needs to learn that the mere repetition of a verbal formula does not change reality.  The reality is that the Obama-backed House bill would explicitly authorize the federal government insurance plan to pay for elective abortions and would explicitly authorize subsidies for private abortion insurance — and all with federal dollars, which are the only kind of dollars that the federal government can spend.”

 The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) last week released definitive memoranda that demonstrate that (1) the “Hyde Amendment” would not apply to the new programs that would be created by the Obama-backed health bill, H.R. 3200, and (2) that all of the funds that would be spent on elective abortions under the bill, and all of the funds that would be spent to subsidize private insurance plans that cover abortion, would be “federal funds” in both the legal sense and in the sense in which those terms are used throughout the government. 

 “The claim that a federal agency would be spending private funds on abortion, not federal funds, is absurd on its face, a political hoax,” Johnson said.

 To read a September 8 NRLC media advisory that summarizes these issues, click here.  The advisory contains links to the detailed memoranda that disprove the “Hyde Amendment myth” and the “government will spend private funds on abortions myth.”

 The National Right to Life Committee, the nation’s largest pro-life group is a federation of affiliates in all 50 states and 3,000 local chapters nationwide. 

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