(Don Nelson) - There are still people arguing that Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare does not fund abortion. Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare does fund and subsidize abortion and represents a dramatic departure from the long standing, widely accepted policy of not covering abortion with government funds. Here are ten ways or things to know about how it funds abortion. For more detailed information, see “The List” in National Right to Life’s Media Backgrounder:Abortion Policy and “Health Care Reform”
1. Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare will directly fund community health care centers, of which Planned Parenthood would be a beneficiary. $11 billion has been set aside for community health care centers with no restrictions to prevent abortion coverage. Abortion advocates are already discussing how these centers can pay for abortion.
2. Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare will subsidize health care plans which provide abortion for tens of millions of people. Plans may not be required to do so, but they are NOT prohibited from doing so. This is a departure from the longstanding, widely accepted policy of not covering abortion with government funds. Claims that women would have to pay for them with personal funds through a convoluted book keeping scheme can argue with Barbara Boxer and Kathleen Sebelius who say it’s only an accounting procedure and of no consequence.
3. Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare contains an abortion mandate. At least one government subsidized health care plan in every area will be required to cover abortion.
4. Enrollees in these government subsidized insurance plans will be required to pay an abortion surcharge whether or not they agree with abortion. To the argument that people do not have to choose an abortion covering plan, if the employer CHOOSES that plan, you’ll take it or not have health care.
5. Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare gives bureaucrats authority to force health care plans to cover abortion. It does not mandate that they do so, but it gives them the authority. It’s hard to see how a president like Barack Obama would not appoint someone to mandate abortion coverage. The Mikulski amendment would require insurers to cover any preventative service. Look for abortion to be defined as a preventative service and private health care plans to be forced to cover abortions.
6. Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare allows states to opt out of abortion covering plans, but even where that may happen, residents of those states will still be required to pay for abortions in other states.
7. There are other massive pools of money with no abortion restrictions. National Right to Life says that Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare contains additional pools of directly appropriated funds that are not covered by any limitations regarding abortion, including $5 billion for a temporary high-risk health insurance pool program (Sec. 1101 on pages 45-52) and $6 billion in grants for health co-ops (Sec. 1322, pp. 169-180). This summer National Right to Life found three states applying for funds under this provision. NRL’s discovery of this forced the Obama administration to deny those funds but the administration said its decision “is not a precedent for other programs or policies…”
8. Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare allows plans in the Federal Employees Health Benefits program to cover abortion. This is a dramatic departure from long standing widely supported policy of not funding abortion with government funds.
9. There is no restriction on abortion in the Indian Health program. This provision negates Reid’s previous vote to stop funding of abortion through the Indian health program.
10. Language in the Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare that restricts direct funding (not to be confused with subsidies) of abortion would be attached to the status of the Hyde amendment. That is, if the Hyde amendment-which only covers Medicaid abortions- continues to be reauthorized every year, direct funding restrictions in the health care reform law will remain in place. If the yearly approved Hyde amendment were to not pass, those restrictions of direct funding of abortion through health care will vanish.
In his debate with Sharron Angle, Reid tried once more to fool people into thinking that the Hyde Amendment prevents government funding of abortion through Reid-Pelosi-Obamacare. Reid knows that the Hyde amendment only prevents public funding of abortion through Medicaid but will have NO impact on preventing abortion from being funding through his health care law. He knows that Hyde is not a permanent law but a yearly amendment attached every year for the last thirty three years to the Health and Human Services bill.
Harry Reid had the chance to make sure his health care law would never fund abortion, but he refused to insert language to do so and fought against amendments that would at the behest of the abortion industry. Reid’s health care law funds and subsidizes abortion. He made sure it does.
(Don Nelson is president of Nevada LIFE)