Friday, December 11, 2009

Pro-Life Leaders Launch Opposition to Senate Health Bill Following Nelson Amendment Demise

By Kathleen Gilbert

WASHINGTON, D.C., December 9, 2009 ( - Following the defeat of the Nelson/Hatch/Casey amendment Tuesday evening, pro-life leaders are calling on senators to oppose the Senate health care bill as it heads towards a final vote, which lawmakers expect will happen before the end of the year.

The Senate voted 54-45 Tuesday evening to table the Nelson/Hatch/Casey amendment, effectively killing the language that would have applied Hyde-amendment restrictions on federal funding of abortion to the health care overhaul. The "tabling" vote allowed Democrats to do away with the Nelson amendment without the 60 votes needed to overcome a GOP filibuster of cloture for the amendment.

The vote came after hours of debate on the Senate floor, with alternating Democrat and Republican speeches at loggerheads as to whether the bill's original abortion language represented adequate protections, as pro-abortion lawmakers claimed, or a vast expansion of abortion, as pro-life lawmakers claimed. Pro-abortion senators also argued that the Nelson/Hatch/Casey amendment was discriminatory against women, and violated women's right to privacy.

Yet pro-life senators maintained earlier Tuesday that the bill's phony "compromise" language on abortion masked a fundamental shift on federal policy regarding elective abortion funding, and called on their compatriots to oppose the bill should the Nelson amendment fail.

"For pro-life senators, this is the vote, but it doesn't stop here," said Sen. Mike Johanns (R-Neb.). "Even if this amendment doesn't pass, I want to make the case that this bill should not go forward, because it literally will create a system ... to finance abortions. And I don't believe that's what this country wants." Full article.

Take action! Contact your senators to let them know you OPPOSE the healthcare reform bill as it's currently written and that abortion is not healthcare. Visit

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