Gosh, that U.S. health care bill. What a complicated mess. But here’s something I like:
While House leaders are moving toward a vote on health-care legislation by the end of the week, enough Democrats are threatening to oppose the measure over the issue of abortion to create a question about its passage.
“I will continue whipping my colleagues to oppose bringing the bill to the floor for a vote until a clean vote against public funding for abortion is allowed,” Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) said Monday in a statement. He said last week that 40 Democrats could vote with him to oppose the legislation — enough to derail the bill.
Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, cast Stupak as “attempting to ban abortion coverage in the private insurance market.”
The abortion dispute centers both on federal subsidies that would be provided for people who cannot afford health-care coverage themselves and the much-debated government insurance alternative, which is included in the House version of the bill but is still being debated in the Senate. Under a 1976 law, federal funds are generally barred from being used for abortions, except in cases of rape or incest or to ensure the life of the mother.
To be perfectly honest, I get lost in the details, which are not exactly undisputed. But I get this much: There are enough lawmakers opposed to the use of federal funds to pay for abortion to derail Barak Obama’s major health-care reform. I’ll bet you he never saw that one coming.by