Pro-Life Women’s Leader: Obama Putting Abortion Ahead of Health Care Reform

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 16, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pro-Life Women’s Leader: Obama Putting Abortion Ahead of Health Care Reform

by Steven Ertelt Editor
February 16
, 2010

Washington, DC ( — The president of a pro-life women’s group says President Barack Obama could likely get congressional approval of a health care reform bill if he would make one important concession. Drop his insistence that the legislation make taxpayers pay for abortions and the bill might move ahead.

In a last gasp to save the pro-abortion government-run health care bill, Obama has called for a bipartisan White House health care summit next week.

Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser, in a new opinion column appearing in the Washington Examiner, says Obama would see more success if abortion were off the table.

The House is reluctant to approve the Senate measure, in part because pro-life and moderate Democrats object to its massive abortion funding and other pro-abortion problems.

"The president promised from the get-go to maintain the national consensus that rejects public funding of abortion. He has yet to live up to it," Dannenfelser says.

"So in this new conciliatory mode, if he ignores the 80-percent consensus opposing abortion coverage in healthcare, the most intractable and divisive issue thus far, he reveals what many have suspected from the beginning – that abortion ideology is more precious to this president than his top domestic priority," she adds.

Dannenfelser points to Obama’s comments to Katie Couric before the Super Bowl, here he said, "Let’s just go through these bills – their ideas, our ideas – let’s walk through them in a methodical way so that the American people can see and compare what makes the most sense."

If Obama were to genuinely do this, Dannenfelser says he would come to the realization that he would help his chances of getting the bill passed by asking lawmakers to remove the abortion funding.

"If the president cannot begin this bipartisan process by abiding by what Americans of all stripes have already made astoundingly clear, he cannot expect to proceed well," she writes. "One quarter of his own party’s caucus rejected abortion coverage and the president’s position by voting for the Stupak Amendment in the House."

"Now the president must be pressed on why he clings to his 20 percent minority position on this issue – the one most controversial issue sinking healthcare reform. Abortion coverage has been the single most disruptive issue in negotiations from the first day of debate over the bill. And it remains so. Why not jettison it?" the SBA List president writes.

Dannenfelser, of course, doesn’t expect that to happen.

"He is so ideologically committed to abortion, so blind to the idea that unborn children could have rights at any stage of pregnancy that he cannot see how a right-thinking person could object to funding the procedure," she said of Obama.

Dannenfelser said the result is an outpouring of support, even from Democratic congressional districts, for a true ban on abortion funding.

"The Susan B. Anthony List and our pro-life allies have gone to the districts of every pro-life Democrat who voted for the Stupak Amendment. First hand, we are witnessing tidal waves of new activism in each district, supporting those Democratic members’ pro-life votes," she writes.

That support has grown the ranks of the pro-life movement.

"The president has presaged a springtime of pro-life activism, the likes of which has never been seen before, including 1973, the year Roe v. Wade struck down every pro-life law in the nation. The grassroots tidal wave of support for the Stupak amendment has only strengthened the bipartisan coalition advocating respect for the consciences of the majority of taxpayers," she writes in the Examiner.

Dannenfelser closes her op-ed with an admonition.

"Mr. President, begin by eliminating the worst ideas. Begin with the end in mind. If you do want to achieve bipartisan consensus, begin by embracing the overwhelming bipartisan rejection of abortion as health care," she concludes.

Related web sites:
Susan B. Anthony List –

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