*A flawed but good bill with a poison pill Amendment stuck in the middle of it.
Yes. Blessed be for a 220-215 vote that moved things forward. And God knows it makes a reasonably decent start at reforming our broken system. (Not as great a start as Single Payer. Just saying.)
But seriously, an amendment that would make getting an abortion damn near impossible for women of a certain income bracket?
Once again, just like in the pre-Roe days, the wealthy will have access to abortion, those who can’t scrape several hundred dollars together won’t. Because of how the exchange is structured, most of people covered through it will be receiving credits or subsidies. Therefore, most of the participants will not have access to a legal medical procedure. Additionally, the reality, as Arons says, is that the insurers participating in the exchange won’t offer it at all, and the question remains whether they’ll continue to offer it for women in employer-based programs outside the exchange, or whether it would just be easier for administrative and overhead purposes to stop covering it at all. Right now, nearly 90 percent of private, employer-based plans cover abortion services. This legislation could result in many of those plans dropping it, to make administration of plans simpler and more cost-effective. We know how critical the bottom line is to them.
And take another look at those exclusions: “where the health but not the life of the woman is threatened by the pregnancy, severe fetal abnormalities, mental illness or anguish that will lead to suicide or self-harm, and the numerous other reasons women need to have an abortion.” Even planned pregnancies are regularly terminated–legally–because of the health of the mother or severe fetal abnormalities. Forcing women to carry these pregnancies to term is dangerous and cruel. Forcing low- and moderate-income women to have to make hard financial decisions to try to come up with the money for the procedure is cruel. It’s also diametrically opposed to the very principles of healthcare reform. This legislation is supposed to be freeing Americans from having to make horrible financial choices between basic necessities and medical care.
Hat tip to McJoan at Daily Kos. Please read the whole post.
I had a Facebook chat with one of my dearest friends on Sunday about this. She’s been pretty upfront over the years about not wanting children. And I told her that her best bet would be to have her tubes tied right now.
I was not joking one little bit.
A child is a life long project. When you have a child, you are accepting the responsibility for a human life. Not just it’s care and feeding of it’s body but it’s mind and spirit. You are responsible for the creation of a functioning and whole human being. And that sort of commitment takes time and preparation. It’s not a choice that should be forced on anyone.
This Amendment will force that choice on more women.
Today, I will be calling Wyden and Merkey and checking to see if they can get the language stripped from the bill in committee. And I’m seriously considering calling Greg Walden’s office to bitch about him voting for the Amendment and then Nay on the bill itself. But considering I’d be bitching at a staffer, it doesn’t seem worth the air.
Here is the list of the Democrats who voted for the amendment. (H/T to Meteor Blades at Daily Kos.)
AL-2 Bright, Bobby; AL- 5 Griffith, Parker; AL-7 Davis, Artur; AR-1 Berry, Robert; AR-2 Snyder, Victor; AR-4 AR-4 Ross, Mike; CA-18 Cardoza, Dennis; CA-20 Costa, Jim; CA-43 Baca, Joe; CO-3 Salazar, John.
GA-2 Bishop, Sanford; GA-8 Marshall, James; GA-12 Barrow, John; KY-6 Chandler, Ben; IL-3 Lipinski, Daniel; IL-12 Costello, Jerry; IN-2 Donnelly, Joe; IN-8 Ellsworth, Brad; IN-9 Hill, Baron; LA-3 Melancon, Charles; ME-2 Michaud, Michael.
MA-2 Neal, Richard; MA-9 Lynch, Stephen; MI-5 Kildee, Dale; MI-1 Stupak, Bart; MN-7 Peterson, Collin; MN-8 Oberstar, James; MS-1 Childers, Travis; MS-4 Taylor, Gene; MO-4 Skelton, Ike; NM-2 Teague, Harry
NC-2 Etheridge, Bob; NC-7 McIntyre, Mike; NC-11 Shuler, Heath; ND Pomeroy, Earl; OH-1 Driehaus, Steve; OH-6 Wilson, Charles; OH-9 Kaptur, Marcy; OH-16 Boccieri, John; OH-17 Ryan, Timothy; OH-18 Space, Zachary.
OK-2 Boren, Dan; PA-3 Dahlkemper, Kathleen; PA-4 Altmire, Jason; PA-10 Carney, Christopher; PA-11 Kanjorski, Paul; PA-12 Murtha, John; PA-14 Doyle, Michael; PA-17 Holden, Tim; RI-2 Langevin, James
SC-5 Spratt, John; TN-4 Davis, Lincoln; TN-5 Cooper, Jim; TN-6 Gordon, Barton; TN-8 Tanner, John; TX-16 Reyes, Silvestre; TX-23 Rodriguez, Ciro; TX-27 Ortiz, Solomon; TX-28 Cuellar, Henry.
UT-2 Matheson, Jim; VA-5 Perriello, Thomas; WV-1 Mollohan, Alan; WV-3 Rahall, Nick; WI-7 Obey, David.
Here is the list of 26 Democrats who voted “Aye” on Stupak but “Nay” on the final bill:
Altmire, Barrow, Boccieri, Boren, Bright, Chandler, Childers, Davis (AL), Davis (TN), Gordon (TN), Griffith, Holden, Marshall, Matheson, McIntyre, Melancon, Peterson, Ross, Shuler, Skelton, Tanner, Taylor, Teague (h/t to askew and Granny Doc)