The 20 supposedly “pro-choice” Democrats who jumped the aisle to support the Stupak Amendment in the House health reform bill will receive coathangers as an early Christmas gift from angry abortion-rights activists. No doubt the gifts will be received with all the love that went into sending them.
Credo Action (an activist network tied to the Credo Mobile cell phone company) is running an Internet campaign to deliver signed petitions along with piles of coathangers to the “pro-choice” congress-critters (all men) who voted for the amendment, which activists say restricts abortion access.
For those just tuning in, the Stupak Amendment prohibits abortion coverage from being offered by any health plan that receives any federal subsidies. Previous amendments prohibited federal monies from being used to pay for abortions. The Stupak Amendment takes that a few steps further, prohibiting insurance companies from using privately earned money to provide abortion coverage for women who are paying out of pocket for their health insurance, if the plan they are paying into has any members whose insurance is federally subsidized.
Confused? It means your current health plan might offer abortion coverage now, but when the health reform plan goes into effect, your insurance provider will have to choose between cancelling your abortion coverage or refusing to enroll anyone whose insurance premiums will be paid in part by federal subsidies.
That strangled cry you’re hearing is the voice of all the pro-choice political activists and women’s rights advocates who worked to get this Congress elected, crying foul at the Democratic Party for throwing them under the bus. Many are hoping to see the amendment struck from the Senate’s version of a reform bill.
What do you think? Is the Stupak Amendment an outrage or a necessary evil? Or maybe even a good idea? Can activists mailing coathangers to Congress possibly help their cause? Would you do it?