Democrats Plan to Push Health Care Despite Some Opposition on Abortion
Democratic leaders plan to push through the Senate's version of the health care bill with or without the support of pro-life Democrats, the Associated Press reports.
That strategy would leave in place the Senate language on abortion. It would allow health plans receiving federal subsidies in a new insurance marketplace to cover abortion, provided they pay for it only with money collected from policyholders. The House bill would have prohibited health plans receiving subsidies from covering abortions.
Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Mich., has been pushing for the stricter House provisions, saying that he and a dozen or so abortion opponents would vote against the health care bill if the Senate language is retained. But the leadership appears to be moving to call his bluff.
However, Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) said he doesn't believe they have enough votes to pass the legislation by President Obama's March 18 deadline.
"I don't see how they're going to get the votes to pass healthcare, no matter what procedure they use, if they want to do it by March 18th," Stupak said last night on Fox News. "I don't see it."
Yesterday, a group of progressive evangelicals sent a letter to the House in support of the Senate's version of the bill, saying that the "longstanding restrictions on federal funding of abortion have been maintained." The group included President of Evangelicals for Social Action Ron Sider, President of Sojourners Jim Wallis, pastor of Northland Church Joel Hunter, and David Gushee, chair of the New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good. Tobin Grant writes more at CT about how other advocacy groups are addressing health care.