This is huge news. The Stupak/Pitts amendment which ensures that federal funding for abortion will be kept out of the HealthCare Bill has passed, 240-194 in the House of Congress in the United States.
Following the surprise move by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi to allow a vote on the amendment, LifeNews.com reported comments on the amendment made by Douglas Johnson, the director of the National Right to Life Committee,
“This will be one of the most important roll call votes that U.S. House members ever casts on a pro-life issue,” he said. “Any lawmaker who votes against the Stupak-Pitts Amendment is, in effect, voting in favor of establishing a federal government program that will directly fund abortion on demand, with federal funds.”
On Saturday evening, 64 Democrats voted with 176 Republicans to support the amendment to the bill. CEO of Planned Parenthood Cecile Richards is understandably quite upset at this outcome, claiming that the new bill will,
“restrict women’s access to abortion coverage in the private health insurance market, undermining the ability of women to purchase private health plans that cover abortion, even if they pay for most of the premiums with their own money.”
However this is not the case as Jill Stanek explained on Saturday before the vote,
This amendment keeps the status quo. It is identical to the current federal employees’ insurance plan, which does not cover abortion. Currently, if a pregnant mother who works for the federal government wants to abort, she can do so with her own money.
Under the Stupak/Pitts amendment any low-income pregnant mother who would get her insurance through the government would have to do to the same. Or if she has a private insurance plan that is subsidized by the federal government, that private company could not pay for her abortion.
This is a massive victory for pro-lifers in the States. The Healthcare Reform Bill may have passed through Congress, however it has done so without cover being provided for abortions. David Brody at the Christian Broadcasting Network writes,
“if you just heard a loud thud, well that was pro-choice liberals in the House plopping down in their seats dumbfounded and frustrated as can be. Not only does their healthcare reform bill not contain a “robust” public option but it now contains this new pro-life language. This is a horrible turn of events for House liberals. You can be sure they’ll be pressure on Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer to strip this language out in conference (if the bill makes it that far) but for now this vote tonight is something pro-choice liberals will lose some sleep over.”
New Zealand already has government-funded abortions for all permanent residents and citizens. To our shame, we are absolutely complacent about this, not even blinking when being told that our tax-money funds this “core health service”, abortion. These abortions are on demand and a large number of them are very likely being carried out in breach of the Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion Act of 1977 which states that abortion is illegal except in a very few circumstances. Pro-lifers in the US have a real fight on their hands to keep their country from slipping down the path of tax-payer funded child-killing as we have in New Zealand.