Health Care Reform on the Brink: Stupak Takes Off the Gloves

Well, we’ve been waiting to hear from him, and now he tells us in no uncertain terms:

Rep. Stupak: “So we’re getting a lot of pressure not to say anything, to try to compromise this principle or belief, and we’re just not – that’s just not us, I mean, we’re not going to do that. Members who voted for the Stupak language in the House – especially the Democrats, 64 Democrats that voted for it – feel very strongly about it. It’s been part of who we are, part of our make up. It’s the principle belief that we have. We are not just going to abandon it in the name of health care.” “So, to go back and ask you again, do you have the votes needed to stop the bill, if it comes to that?”

Rep. Stupak: “Well, if all the issues are resolved and we’re down to the pro-life view or, I should say, no public funding for abortion, there’s at least 10 to 12 members who have said repeatedly, unless this language is fixed and current law is maintained and no public funding for abortion, they’re not gonna’  vote for the bill. There’s 10 or 12 of us — they only passed the bill by 3 votes, so they’re going to be short 8 to 9, maybe 6 to 8 votes. So they do not have the votes to pass it in the House.”

He has now said it publicly.  He and several other pro-life democrats are prepared to kill health care reform in order to make sure no federally administered and subsidized insurance  exchange provides abortion coverage.  Is the party itself ready to kill health care reform–and essentially fall on its own political sword–to make NARAL and Planned Parenthood happy?  Who are the democrats and will they get on the side of a consistent ethic of life as public opinion shifts in that direction?

Given the push to get the bill passed by the President’s State of the Union speech in late January, the coming weeks will be interesting indeed!


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