NRLC Letter: Six Ways Senate Health Care Bill Results in Abortion Funding

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — As Congressional Democrats work on merging the House and Senate versions of the government-run health care bill, a new letter from the National Right to Life Committee details six ways in which the Senate version mandates taxpayer funding of abortions.

The details are important because the Senate version of the legislation, especially when it comes to language concerning abortion, is expected to form the basis of the merged bill.

The letter to members of Congress comes at a time when pro-life groups are hoping to urge pro-life Democrats to hold fast against any final bill that includes abortion funding.

The NRLC letter says the “House-passed bill (H.R. 3962) and the Senate-passed bill (H.R. 3590) are far more divergent on abortion policy matters than one would understand on the basis of accounts in the news media.”

While the House bill contains the Stupak amendment to stop abortion funding, the Senate bill contains the Nelson-Reid deal that allows states to force taxpayers to finance abortions.

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Catholic Abortion Foe Rep. Bart Stupak Defies His Democratic Party on Health Care Bill

MENOMINEE, Mich. — Representative Bart Stupak often endures things others find unbearable. He crisscrosses a Congressional district so vast that some constituents live eight hours apart and so cold that the beer at his beloved football games sometimes freezes. Years ago, as a state trooper, he blew out his knee chasing a suspect, and he has since had so many operations that he now returns to work the same day, toting crutches and ice.

After his younger son committed suicide in 2000, using the congressman’s gun, Mr. Stupak soon resumed his predawn commute to Washington and his solid voting record with the National Rifle Association.

Now he is enduring more hatred than perhaps any other member of Congress, much of it from fellow Democrats. His name has become a slogan: “Stop Stupak!”

Scott Schloegel, his chief of staff, said wearily, “I can’t tell you how many New Yorkers have called me up and yelled at me about this Stupak guy.”

With final negotiations on a health care overhaul beginning this week, complaints about “the evil Stupak amendment,” as the congressman dryly called it over dinner here recently, are likely to grow even louder. The amendment prevents women who receive federal insurance subsidies from buying abortion coverage — but critics assert it could cause women who buy their own insurance difficulty in obtaining coverage.

Mr. Stupak insists that the final bill include his terms, which he says merely reflect current law. If he prevails, he will have won an audacious, counterintuitive victory, forcing a Democratic-controlled Congress to pass a measure that will be hailed as an anti-abortion triumph. If party members do not accept his terms — and many vow they will not — Mr. Stupak is prepared to block passage of the health care overhaul.

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Is it wrong for the Church to “interfere” in the political arena?

Q: Is it wrong for the Church to interfere in the political arena, as Nancy Pelosi recently claims the Catholic Church did, just prior to the Stupak Amendment passing in the House last month?

A:  Here is a quote from Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen on the subject:

“If by interference in politics is meant judging or condemning a philosophy of life which makes the party, or the state, or the class, or the race the source of all rights, and which usurps the soul and enthrones party over conscience and denies those basic rights for which this war was fought, the answer is emphatically Yes! The Church does judge such a philosophy. But when it does this, it is not interfering with politics, for such politics is no longer politics but Theology. When a State sets itself up as absolute as God, when it claims sovereignty over the soul, when it destroys freedom of conscience and freedom of religion, then the State has ceased to be political and has begun to be a counter-Church.” ~ Bishop Sheen, Characters of the Passion

Q&A provided by Phil S.

Submitted by Bob Stanley

USCCB NATIONWIDE BULLETIN INSERT ON HEALTH CARE BILL

usccblogo

USCCB NATIONWIDE BULLETIN INSERT

Tell Congress: Remove Abortion Funding & Mandates from Needed Health Care Reform

Congress is preparing to debate health care reform legislation on the House and Senate floors.

Genuine health care reform should protect the life and dignity of all people from the moment of conception until natural death. The U.S. bishops’ conference has concluded that all committee approved bills are seriously deficient on the issues of abortion and conscience, and do not provide adequate access to health care for immigrants and the poor.

The bills will have to change or the bishops have pledged to oppose them.

Our nation is at a crossroads. Policies adopted in health care reform will have an impact for good or ill for years to come. None of the bills retains longstanding current policies against abortion funding or abortion coverage mandates, and none fully protects conscience rights in health care.

As the U.S. bishops’ letter of October 8 states:

“No one should be required to pay for or participate in abortion. It is essential that the legislation clearly apply to this new program longstanding and widely supported federal restrictions on abortion funding and mandates, and protections for rights of conscience.

No current bill meets this test…. If acceptable language in these areas cannot be found, we will have to oppose the health care bill vigorously.”

For the full text of this letter and more information on proposed legislation and the bishops’ advocacy for authentic health care reform, visit: http://www.usccb.org/healthcare.

Congressional leaders are attempting to put together final bills for floor consideration. Please contact your Representative and Senators today and urge them to fix these bills with the pro-life amendments noted below. Otherwise much needed health care reform will have to be opposed. Health care reform should be about saving lives, not destroying them.

ACTION: Contact Members through e-mail, phone calls or FAX letters.

 To send a pre-written, instant e-mail to Congress go to http://www.usccb.org/action.

 Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at: 202-224-3121, or call your Members’ local offices.

 Full contact info can be found on Members’ web sites at http://www.house.gov & http://www.senate.gov.

MESSAGE to SENATE:

“During floor debate on the health care reform bill, please support an amendment to incorporate longstanding policies against abortion funding and in favor of conscience rights. If these serious concerns are not addressed, the final bill should be opposed.”

MESSAGE to HOUSE:

“Please support the Stupak Amendment that addresses essential pro-life concerns on abortion funding and conscience rights in the health care reform bill. Help ensure that the Rule for the bill allows a vote on this amendment. If these serious concerns are not addressed, the final bill should be opposed.”

WHEN: Both House and Senate are preparing for floor votes now. Act today! Thank you!

More here (PDF file)