Senate Bill Would Force Taxpayer Funding of Abortions for Federal Employees

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 24, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Senate Bill Would Force Taxpayer Funding of Abortions for Federal Employees

by Steven Ertelt Editor
July 24
, 2009

Washington, DC ( — Another bill in Congress overturns a longstanding pro-life policy preventing taxpayer funding of abortions in certain cases. The Senate Financial Services Appropriations bill, S. 1432, would have Americans fund abortions for employees of the federal government.

When Congress adopts the funding bill each year, it has included an amendment from pro-life Rep. Chris Smith, a New Jersey Republican, to stop tax-funding of abortions for federal employees in their health care plans.

However, a search of the new bill that Senate Democrats crafted finds the Smith Amendment prohibiting taxpayer-subsidized abortions through the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program (FEHBP) has been deleted.

The FEHBP covered 8 million people who work for the federal government and funding of their abortions would have the bill backing abortions with government money in two instances.

The bill has already come under fire already from pro-life advocates because it, like its House version, would overturn the ban on taxpayer funding of abortions in the nation’s capital.

Leading pro-life advocates tell that funding abortions in the FEHBP is particularly noteworthy in light of the ongoing debate on national health care reform. The FEHBP has been repeatedly used as an example of what a government-run health care system could become.

The House-passed Financial Services Appropriations bill, H.R. 3170, will allow publicly funded abortion in the District of Columbia.

The measure narrowly passed the House over pro-life objections by a vote of 219-208 after Democratic leaders prevented pro-life lawmakers from obtaining a vote on an amendment that would have restored the abortion funding ban.

Pro-life Reps. Todd Tiahrt, a Republican, and Lincoln Davis, a Democrat, floated an amendment to the bill to stop President Barack Obama’s request that the longstanding ban on publicly-funded abortions in the District of Columbia be overturned. The House Appropriations Committee rejected the amendment on a 33-28 vote.

Tiahrt and Davis were joined by eight other congressmen from both parties who wanted to have a chance to vote on the amendment on Thursday on the House floor when the full House considers the legislation.

However, the Democratic-controlled House Rules Committee voted against allowing consideration of the Tiahrt/Davis amendment to restore the District of Columbia abortion funding ban.

Later, Democratic leaders manipulated a vote that further prevented consideration of the amendment.

ACTION: Contact members of the Senate at 202-224-3121 or and oppose taxpayer funding of abortions for federal employees.

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