Stupak Says House Lacks Health Care Bill Votes as Committee Rejects Abortion Limits
by Steven Ertelt
March 16, 2010
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Congressman Bart Stupak, the leading pro-life Democrat working to stop the pro-abortion Senate health care bill in the House if abortion funding is not banned, says he still doesn’t think House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has enough votes to push the measure through the chamber.
His comments come after the House Budget Committee rejected an attempt to add his amendment to the reconciliation bill.
In an interview with Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren, Stupak said he and his pro-life Democratic colleagues have not backed down from their position that they will vote against the pro-abortion health care bill unless abortion funding and promotion is removed.
"We’re still not planning on voting for health care unless we can address some concerns. As I said before, there’s many concerns with this bill, especially with the House — with our vote, we sort of pass the Senate bill without any amendments," he said.
Asked whether he thought there were enough votes for the bill, Stupak said no because so many members are unwilling to take a stance without knowing if the reconciliation bill to make corrections to the Senate bill will be approved.
"No one has seen the reconciliation, the correction bill, if you will. No one has seen it. So it’s hard for members to pledge their vote on a piece of legislation we’ve never seen," he said.
Ultimately, on abortion, the pro-life Democrats that are working with Stupak are not supportive of the bill.
"But you know, the group that’s with me, who’s worked so hard to make sure that we keep current law of no public funding for abortion — we haven’t seen any language to placate our concerns. There’s been a lot of discussions, but no language yet," he told Fox News.
Stupak says he thinks Pelosi and top Democrats are further away from their goal of 216 votes for the pro-abortion bill than they’re admitting publicly.
"I would only guesstimate on my side — I’m not in there counting votes with them. But I’d be surprised if they have 200 votes," he said.
Late Monday, during the budget panel’s meeting which saw it approve the "shell" reconciliation bill, motions were offered to instruct the House on issues related to health care reform.
Reps. Jim Jordon of Ohio and Robert Aderholt of Alabama, both Republicans, offered a motion to include the Stupak amendment in health care reform and it was rejected by a vote of 19-17.
Of the 15 Republicans, 14 voted for the motion and Representative Scott Garrett of New Jersey was absent.
Of the 24 Democrats, Reps. Marcy Kaptur of Ohio, Marian Berry of Arkansas, and Jim Langevin of Rhode Island voted for the Stupak amendment. Some 19 voted against the amendment to stop abortion funding, and Reps. Schrader of Oregon and Xavier Becerra of California were absent.
Notably, Budget Committee Chairman John Spratt, a South Carolina Democrat, and Rep. Bob Etheridge of North Carolina, both voted for the Stupak amendment when it was considered on the House floor but voted against the amendment in committee yesterday.
ACTION: Contact your member of Congress to oppose the pro-abortion health care bill 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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