Obama Spokesman: He Prefers Senate Health Care Bill With Abortion Funding
by Steven Ertelt
December 27, 2009
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — President Barack Obama promised Americans in a speech to Congress that his version of a government-run health care bill would not contain abortion funding. Now his top spokesman confirms that Obama favors the Senate bill that funds abortions over the House bill that bans abortion funding.
In a September nationally-televised speech to Congress, Obama sought to clear up projections from pro-life advocates that his health care plan would fund abortions.
"One more misunderstanding I want to clear up — under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions," Obama claimed.
Since his speech, the House has approved a health care bill that contains the Stupak amendment making it so taxpayer funding of abortions is prohibited in virtually all cases. On the other hand, the Senate bill contains the Reid-Nelson language that opens the door to forcing taxpayers to fund abortions and allowing the Obama administration to force insurance companies to cover them with taxpayers’ premiums.
Members of the House and Senate will have to work out final language and battle each other over whether the conference committee bill will fund abortions or not.
Following up on the impending battle, ABC News correspondent Jake Tapper spoke with White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs after their interview on "This Week" about health care.
"So, does the Senate language come closer to what the president wants than the House language?" he said he asked Gibbs. "Gibbs told me this morning: ‘Yes.’"
If so, that clearly violates the pledge Obama made that, under the health care bill he would support, it would not fund abortions with federal dollars.
Obama has already apparently broken his pledge twice before.
In November, the Obama administration released a statement saying Obama supported the House health care bill that, at the time, funded abortions and did not have the Stupak amendment attached.
Then, earlier this month, Obama endorsed the Senate pro-abortion health care bill lobbied lawmakers to approve it in a private meeting.
In departure from longstanding federal policy, section 1303(b)(1)(A) of the Senate health care bill allows a "qualified health plan" one that participates in an Exchange and is available to individuals who receive tax credits to cover part of their insurance premiums to include abortion coverage.
"Therefore, insurance plans that cover elective abortions will receive these federal subsidies," Americans United for Life explains.
"Finally, there is an additional limitation on choice in Majority Leader Reids amendment that has been largely ignored, and for the first time in U.S. history imposes an abortion tax on unwilling Americans," AUL adds.
"Under Majority Leader Reids amendment, ALL individuals who participate in plans in the Exchange that include elective abortion coverage, even if they do so unwittingly, will directly pay part of their own premiums into an account that pays for nothing but elective abortions," the pro-life group says.
"The amendment provides that each and every enrollee in such a plan (or their employer on their behalf) must write a separate check for elective abortion coverage, even if that enrollee never intends to have an abortion. That amount cannot be less than $12.00 per year," it notes.
"If John Doe works for XYZ, a small business, and XYZ decides to enroll John and the rest of its employees in an insurance plan that includes abortion coverage in an exchange, John and his coworkers will be forced to pay this abortion tax," the group concludes.
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