The Stupak amendment, proposed Saturday by House Democrat Bart Stupak,
restricts federal funding from going towards abortions. This may not
sound groundbreaking, but because the House bill expands the scope of government-funded health care
, the Stupak amendment would also expand restrictions on abortion. While the amendment may have saved
health care reform
, it will severely limit abortion rights in the U.S. The development has liberal
Democrats, particularly women,
threatening to divide the party.
- Abortions For Rich Only The Washington Post's Ezra Klein explains that anyone who participates in government-run insurance will have no abortion coverage. "The idea that
people are going to go out and purchase separate 'abortion plans' is
both cruel and laughable. If this amendment passes, it will mean that
virtually all women with insurance through the exchange who find
themselves in the unwanted and unexpected position of needing to
terminate a pregnancy will not have coverage for the procedure.
Abortion coverage will not be outlawed in this country. It will simply
be tiered, reserved for those rich enough to afford insurance
themselves or lucky enough to receive from their employers."
- Democrats' Women Problem Rachel Maddow said
on Meet the Press that "the biggest restriction on abortion access in
country in a generation" would cause liberal women to waver in their
support of Democrats. "I think you can expect Democratic women to sit
their hands at least if not revolt if that doesn't get taken out in
- Primary Challenges for 'Betrayal' FireDogLake's Rayne insists
that the 64 Democrats who voted for Stupak should be run out of office.
"Stupak Amendment Passes; 64 Dems Ask for Primary Opponents," she
writes. "We've fought long and hard to protect this right. And now
we’ve seen decades of work to protect this fundamental human right
dashed by our own Democratic representatives."
- Kill Health Care Reform Taylor Marsh insists
in the Huffington Post that no reform at all would be preferable.
"Obama opened the door to sell us out" and House Democrats followed
suit. "Democrats just sold us out too. Progressives in the House should
have killed the bill. Civil rights begin with autonomy over our own
- 'A Vagina Added Tax' TBogg snarks it up. "Hey ladies! [Republican] Congressman Pete Sessions of Texas thinks you should pay
more for your insurance because you chose to have all that crazy
plumbing with its nook and crannies down there
instead of a good old fashioned American penis," the liberal blogger
writes. "No word on whether this will affect the dickless Democrats who
voted against health care."
It Gets Worse The Nation's Sharon Lerner recently surveyed
the shortcomings in requiring better coverage of women's health issues.
None of the bills emerging from the House and Senate require insurers
cover all the elements of a standard gynecological "well visit,"
essential care such as pelvic exams, domestic violence screening,
counseling about sexually transmitted diseases, and, perhaps most
startlingly, the provision of birth control off the list of basic
benefits all insurers must cover. Nor are these services protected from
'cost sharing,' which means that, depending on what's in the bill that
emerges from the Senate, and, later, the contents of a final
bill, women could wind up having to pay for some of these services out
of their own pockets."
Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments
or send an email to the author at
mfisher at theatlantic dot com.
You can share ideas for stories on the Open Wire.