Obama Seeks Revision of Plan’s Abortion Limits

The New York Times
November 9, 2009

WASHINGTON — President Obama suggested Monday that he was not comfortable with abortion restrictions inserted into the House version of major health care legislation, and he prodded Congress to revise them.

“There needs to be some more work before we get to the point where we’re not changing the status quo” on abortion, Mr. Obama said in an interview with ABC News. “And that’s the goal.”

On the one hand, Mr. Obama said, “we’re not looking to change what is the principle that has been in place for a very long time, which is federal dollars are not used to subsidize abortions.”

On the other hand, he said, he wanted to make sure “we’re not restricting women’s insurance choices,” because he had promised that “if you’re happy and satisfied with the insurance that you have, it’s not going to change.”

Before passing its health bill on Saturday, the House adopted an amendment that would block the use of federal money for “any health plan that includes coverage of abortion,” except in the case of rape or incest or if the life of a pregnant woman is in danger.

Some private insurance now covers abortion. Under the bill, most private insurers would receive federal subsidies on behalf of low- and middle-income people.

The Senate is working on its own version of health legislation.

Senator Susan Collins, a Maine Republican and pivotal centrist courted by the White House, delivered a blistering critique of the Senate bill on Monday, saying she could not support it because it would increase insurance costs for many middle-income families and small businesses.

“We should rewrite the whole bill,” Ms. Collins said. “There is considerable unease on both sides of the aisle about the impact of this bill, and as more analysis is done, I believe those concerns will only grow.”

The complete article is here.

Comments are closed.