Opposition to Pro-Abortion Health Care Bill Jumps After New Pelosi Bill Introduced
by Steven Ertelt
November 2, 2009
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Now that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has introduced the latest version of the government-run health care reform bill that funds abortions, the latest polling data shows opposition increasing. A Rasmussen Reports survey shows opposition up from 6 to percent since before the Pelosi bill.
Rasmussen had opposition to the pro-abortion health care bill pegged at 51-45 percent during the latter part of October.
Following the unveiling of the Pelosi bill, HR 3962, late last week, the number now stands at 54 percent opposed and 42 percent who favor the legislation.
Only 23% of all voters Strongly Support the plan while nearly twice as many, 44 percent, remain strongly opposed.
As has been the case for months, Democrats favor the plan while Republicans and voters not affiliated with either major party are opposed. The latest numbers show support from 69% of those in the presidents party. The plan is opposed by 80% of Republicans and a plurality, 48 percent, of unaffiliated voters.
Seventy-three percent of liberals support the plan, but just 18% of conservatives agree.
The new legislation combines three pro-abortion versions of the same bill and has been renumbered as H.R. 3962. Democrats hope to bring the measure to the House floor for a debate and vote this week and it appears that will happen without allowing pro-life Democrats and Republicans to vote on an amendment from Rep. Bart Stupak that would disallow abortion funding.
The bill includes the so-called government option or public option that expands abortion funding even further than do the subsidies that can be used to purchase health care insurance that pays for abortions.
Douglas Johnson, the legislative director for the National Right to Life Committee, told LifeNews.com last week that A vote for this bill is a vote to establish a federal government program that will directly fund abortion on demand, with federal funds."
Johnson referred specifically to language on page 110 of the new bill (H.R. 3962) which explicitly authorizes the "public health insurance option" to pay for all elective abortions. The "public health insurance option" or "public plan" would be a health insurance program operated directly by the federal government, through the Department of Health and Human Services.
"The public plan will be a federal agency program, and all funds spent by the agency are federal funds," Johnson said.
"The nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS), in an October 9 memo obtained by NRLC, confirmed that all funds spent by the bill’s public plan will be federal funds. Prominent Democrats who have claimed that the federal government could pay for abortion with ‘private’ funds have been engaged in a big snow job — and in swallowing such a contrived, implausible claim, many journalists have been all too gullible," he explained.
The bill also has a second objectionable provision relating to abortion — it would allow federal subsidies to help pay for the cost of private health plans that cover elective abortion, a departure from longstanding federal policy.
To stop the abortion funding, pro-life Democratic Rep. Bart Stupak of Michigan has proposed an amendment that would prohibit the federal government plan from paying for abortion but Pelosi will likely force the House to vote on the bill under a closed rule that prohibits amendments.
NRLC and other pro-life groups are urging House members to vote against imposition of the closed rule preventing the pro-life amendment.
"Anyone voting to forbid amendments to this bill is in effect voting to set up a federal government program that will directly fund abortion on demand, with federal funds," Johnson said.
For Pelosi, an initial survey of House Democrats her top lieutenants conducted reveals she is about 17 votes shy of the 218 she needs to get approval for a pro-abortion bill with the public plan.
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