Fight the Abortion Coverage Ban

As we’ve noted before, the Stupak amendment passed by the house would have devastating consequences for women’s access to abortion in the US. It’s now being introduced as an amendment to the Senate bill, which had previously been much better (if imperfect) on this score. Planned Parenthood is mobilising an urgent action against this. To join in, go here. It only takes a few seconds.

6 thoughts on “Fight the Abortion Coverage Ban

  1. The Stupak Amendment maintains a 30+ year policy of preventing American taxpayers from having to pay for other people’s abortions. Federal taxpayer money should not be used to fund abortions, which a majority of Americans believe takes a human life. Why don’t we focus on public funding of real alternatives for women? Women deserve better than abortion.

  2. Well said Another Feminist for Life!! Why doesn’t Planned Parenthood start helping women find healthy alternatives to abortion–alternatives that do not put their physical, emotional, and psychological well-being in jeopardy for the rest of their lives. If we truly cared about women and their needs (rather than the financial gain Planned Parenthood will gain from an increase in the number of abortions they perform), we’d seek health care coverage that actually protected women’s health. We would also be fighing for continued health care coverage for mammograms to prevent breast cancer, one of the most common causes of women’s death.

  3. The Stupak amendment goes much further than the Hyde amendment (that’s the 30+ year policy of not using HHS funds for abortion). The Hyde amendment is narrowly targeted in its effect: HHS funds cannot be used to directly pay for an abortion. But government funds can still be used, for example, to provide food stamps for a single mother living below the poverty line — who may then be able to pay for an abortion, when she couldn’t otherwise.

    The argument behind the Stupak amendment is that the second sort of case is an indirect use of government funds to pay for abortion, and equally objectionable as in the direct use in the first sort of case. It therefore prohibits any insurance plan that receives any money from the government under the health reform law from providing coverage for abortion. For example, suppose Maria is a barista at a Starbucks in Seattle, and that she’s insured with Blue Cross along with every other Starbucks employee. (Starbucks is actually fairly generous with health insurance benefits, compared to other service industry firms.) To help afford coverage for her children, another Starbucks employee in Atlanta receives a subsidy of, let’s say, a thousand dollars a year from the government. Even this small amount, involving complete strangers on the other side of the country, would mean, under Stupak, that the Blue Cross plan for all Starbucks employees could not cover abortion.

    I’m pro-choice, but I’m willing to concede the Hyde amendment as a necessary compromise for keeping the abortion debate from tearing our country apart. The Stupak amendment, however, goes much, much further than the Hyde amendment. This is why I, along with many other pro-choicers, find it deeply unacceptable.

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