Time Magazine Confirms Health Care Bills Include Taxpayer-Funded Abortions

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

Time Magazine Confirms Health Care Bills Include Taxpayer-Funded Abortions

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
August 24
, 2009

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Time magazine joins the Associated Press and the nonpartisan FactCheck web site in confirming that the health care bills in Congress allow taxpayer-funded abortions. The weekly publication takes Obama to task saying he "does not tell the whole story" on how the bills fund abortions.

"The health-care reform proposed by House Democrats, if enacted, would in fact mark a significant change in the Federal Government’s role in the financing of abortions," Time explains.

Although the health care bills do not overturn the time-honored protections found in the Hyde amendment and federal laws (though they could be easily overturned by a Democratic-controlled Congress, Time explains how the health care bills set up a new scheme that would not be subjected to those provisions against abortion funding.

The main House bill, HR 3200, "does find a way for the Federal Government to expand the coverage of abortion services through a government-run program — the so-called public option — without spending what it defines as federal dollars on abortion."

Although awkwardly-worded, Time explains that "money collected from members dues" could be used to pay for abortions.

Abortion advocates like to claim that means taxpayer-funding of abortion isn’t present, but the dues become federal dollars once the federal government collects them.

Time explains how the money Americans pay in to the system is put in a segregated account but "the problem is that all those who sign up for the public option would have to pay into the account for abortion coverage, an amount ‘not less than $1 per month’" under the bill.

"So in effect, anyone who wanted to sign up for the public option, a federally funded and administered program, would find themselves paying for abortion coverage," Time magazine explains.

Time also explains how "private insurance companies, which could receive taxpayer subsidies to cover low-income individuals" could decide to use those taxpayer funds to pay for abortions. Pro-life advocates have tried to amend the bill to stop that, but have been unsuccessful so far.

Ultimately, "the new system differs markedly from the old federal policy of not involving the government in abortion services," the magazine says

Time also cites Glen Halva-Neubauer, a political scientist at Furman University, who confirms that the bill "does represent a policy shift in favor of the abortion-rights community that it would not have received under George W. Bush’s Administration."

LifeNews.com talked with Douglas Johnson, the legislative director of the National Right to Life Committee, about the Time magazine piece.

Johnson said Time "helps dispel some of the White House disinformation" about abortion funding supposedly not appearing in the health care bill. He says the article’s confirmation about how the health care bill will result in taxpayer-funding of abortions is "certainly accurate although understated."

"The article is somewhat muddled, however, in that the writers still seem to think that there might be some way that a federal agency can write checks to abortionists without it being ‘federal’ or ‘government’ funding of abortion, in some sense," Johnson adds.

"Let’s be clear on this: Federal agencies receive funds from many sources, but once the government has the money and is writing the checks, they are public funds, federal funds. And if they are spent on abortions, then that is government funding of abortion," Johnson concluded.

Marjorie Dannenfelser, the president of the pro-life women’s group Susan B. Anthony List, also noticed the Time article and its confirmation of what pro-life groups have been saying.

She said it is another reason why Congress must include language making it clear that the health care plan should not result in abortion funding.

“President Obama recently argued that our concerns about abortion coverage are a fabrication, but we respectfully disagree," the told LifeNews.com. "Without language to exclude abortion coverage, the current legislation will allow abortion coverage in health plans backed by the United States Government.”

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