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Catholic Republican House Members have sent Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) a letter blasting her remarks about abortion on “Meet the Press.”

“To reduce the scandal and consternation caused amongst the faithful by your remarks, we necessarily write you to correct the public record and affirm the Church’s actual and historical teaching that defends the sanctity of human life,” says the letter signed by 19 House Republicans including Minority Leader John Boehner (Ohio) and Republican Policy Committee Chairman Thaddeus McCotter (Mich.).

The GOP letter takes Pelosi to task for saying of the church’s opposition to abortion: “I understand. And this is like maybe 50 years or something like that. So again, over the history of the church, this is an issue of controversy.”

But the GOP letter says that throughout the church’s history, “the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion,” quoting from the Catechism.

Pelosi spokesman Brendan Daly defended Pelosi, saying the mother of five and grandmother of seven “fully appreciates the sanctity of family.”

Daly said she studied the matter closely after she was elected to Congress.

“Her views on when life begins were informed by the views of Saint Augustine, who said: ‘… the law does not provide that [abortion] pertains to homicide, for there cannot yet be said to be a live soul in a body that lacks sensation.’” Daly said.

“While Catholic teaching is clear that life begins at conception, many Catholics do not ascribe to that view. The Speaker agrees with the church that we should reduce the number of abortions. She believes that can be done by making family planning more available, as well as by increasing the number of comprehensive age-appropriate sex education and caring adoption programs.”

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