Monday, November 9, 2009

Abortion and the Health Care Bill

This past Saturday, the House passed a new Health Care Act extending coverage to 98% of Americans 220-215 (one Republican voted for the measure). Included in the final passage of the Bill was the so-called Stupak Amendment (named after Rep. Stupak (D) of Michigan). The amendment "not only prohibits abortion coverage in the public insurance option included in the House bill. It would also prevent private plans from offering coverage for abortion services if they accept people who are receiving government subsidies."

The amendment passed 240-194 [all 176 Republicans and 64 Democrats], however lawmakers already are moving to strip the amendment from the compromise version.

“I am confident that when it comes back from the conference committee that that language won't be there,” Wasserman Schultz said during an appearance on MSNBC. “And I think we're all going to be working very hard, particularly the pro-choice members, to make sure that's the case.” Wasserman Schultz is the Democratic Chief Deputy WHIP.

The Senate currently is considering its version of the health care bill, of which Joe Lieberman has stated he will not vote for if it kills the private insurance industry. If the Senate manages to pass a bill, the House version and Senate version would then be reconciled. It is here that the Stupak Amendment would be stripped or neutered.

Our work as Pro-Life Catholics is far from over.

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