Battle to Stop Pro-Abortion Health Care Bill Begins Monday, Vote Next Week
by Steven Ertelt
March 12, 2010
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — The pro-life community has been subjected to a roller coaster week with chaos and confusion on the monumental battle to stop the pro-abortion health care bill. Now, it appears Democrats have solidified their plan on moving forward — with the battle beginning Monday and a final vote late next week.
That gives pro-life groups just one week to turn out millions of calls and emails to members of the House urging them to vote no on the Senate pro-abortion health care bill and any companion measures.
As Douglas Johnson of the National Right to Life Committee tells LifeNews.com, "What is needed is for the Washington office and district offices of every House Democrat to be flooded from calls from his or her constituents, saying in no uncertain terms, ‘Kill the Senate health bill, or we will remember in November.’"
Democrats have examined virtually every possible method of railroading the government-run health care bill through Congress and they appear to have finalized a plan to pass it and leave the abortion funding and promotion in place.
In the haze of the confusion on Capital Hill, some details can be confirmed.
Democratic leaders have confirmed repeatedly on Thursday and Friday that they will not strike a deal with pro-life Democrats, led by Rep. Bart Stupak, to stop abortion funding. They have gone as far as saying they specifically want to force Americans to pay for abortions.
Instead, they will move forward with a plan LifeNews.com outlined on Thursday that has a "shell" or reconciliation bill moving through the committee process.
That will have the House Budget Committee starting things off with consideration of a companion bill, that will not remove the abortion funding or abortion promotion from the Senate bill, on Monday.
They will also use the so-called Slaughter Rule that will essentially have the House voting on rules for debate that essentially will have the House declaring the pro-abortion health care bill passed without actually taking a vote on it.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi emerged from a closed-door meeting with Democrats today and announced they are moving forward.
I feel very exhilarated, she said following a meeting of the Democratic Caucus. Members are eager to pass a bill.
Pelosi and her top Democratic lieutenants say they have enough votes to pass these bills and procedural motions, but pro-life Democrats say otherwise and most will join their Republican colleagues in opposing all bills and motions.
However, there is concern that some pro-life Democrats are weakening in their stance against the bills and motions and pro-life groups are urging pro-life advocates to make sure every pro-life person in their district calls them urging no votes.
Rep. Bill Pascrell, a pro-abortion New Jersey Democrat, admitted today to Congressional Quarterly that the vote is very close and Democrats are just under what they need.
"I think we’re in the range of 12-13 votes of getting this done," he said.
NRLC’s Johnson told LifeNews.com that every lawmaker will be held accountable for their votes on what Right to Life and pro-life organizations consider the most important pro-life votes in years because of the potential to fund hundreds of thousands of abortions.
"Every House Republican already opposes the Senate health bill, but President Obama and Speaker Pelosi think they can muscle the bill into law. They are whipping some Democrats into line and they plan to roll over the rest. But these lawmakers are ultimately accountable to their voters, not to their party leaders," he said.
Under the Senate health care bill that will be the main bill Obama and Democrats push through Congress, there is no ban on abortion funding. While some states can opt out of funding abortions under the plan, taxpayers in other states will be forced to pay for them.
But the bill contains other pro-abortion problems that are concerns for pro-life advocates.
The bill requires that at least one health care plan be promoted across the country that pays for abortions, more abortion funding would come via the affordability credits, and many of the so-called limits on abortion funding in the Senate bill are temporary and could expire or be overturned at a later date.
The Senate health care bill also pays for abortions under the Indian Health Service program.
And it contains the Mikulski amendment that would allow the Obama administration to define abortion as preventative care and force insurance plans to pay for abortions.
Finally, the Senate bill does not contain language needed to offer full conscience protection for pro-life medical workers and facilities.
ACTION: Contact your member of Congress by going to https://www.House.gov and then tell every pro-life friend and family member to do the same. Urge opposition to the Senate bill, the compantion measure and the Slaughter Rule.
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