DAILY CATHOLIC     TUESDAY     July 21, 1998     vol. 9, no. 141

from a CATHOLIC perspective

To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO


          WASHINGTON, DC (CWNews.com) - Congressional Republicans introduced a new bill last week that would change racketeering laws to protect the freedom of speech for grassroots organizations, such as pro-life groups.

          The bill, sponsored by Rep. John Shadegg, R-Arizona, was prompted by an April court victory by the National Organization for Women against the Pro-Life Action Network using the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. Supporters said the legislation would protect protesters' rights to free speech from opponents using the law to shut them down.

          "It was never the intention that (the law) be used against advocacy groups," said Rep. Bill McCollum, R-Florida, chairman of the crime subcommittee. "I am committed to preventing a statute created to punish true criminal wrongdoing from being used to chill the expression of a viewpoint with which some people may disagree," he said. The Justice Department registered its opposition to the measure, saying it "would grievously impair the United States' ability to combat organized crime's corrupt influence over labor unions and labor-management relations."

Articles provided through Catholic World News Service.
CWN is not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provides this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

July 21, 1998       volume 9, no. 141


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