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Stupak Amendment Debate Begins

Rep. Bart Stupak

Rep. Bart Stupak

Here it is. There will be 20 minutes of debate on the Stupak Amendment, and then, I assume, a vote. I’ll be updating.

…I just want to mention that Kathy Dahlkemper last night said that the exchanges should not offer abortion coverage because SCHIP doesn’t.

Yeah, that’s because it covers children.

Stupak says that companies could offer supplemental abortion coverage. Health insurance companies can offer policies in the exchange that cover abortion, they just can’t give that policy to people seeking affordability credits.

Diana DeGette is getting after it: “This would be the greatest restriction on the right to choose in all of our careers.”

DeGette takes down the supplemental insurance idea: “This is offensive to women… should people be subject to supplemental insurance for cancer treatment just in case they get cancer?” She gets applause at the end of her statement.

Joe Pitts, a Republican, is joining Stupak in controlling that side of the debate. He’s speaking now. “Every dollar in the public option is a federal dollar.” Bullshit. The public option is self-sustaining and paid for by premiums. This is radical rhetoric to say such a thing. Because women may drive to an abortion clinic on roads paid for by public highway funds, is that too illegal under the Stupak/Pitts logic?

Rosa DeLauro is speaking against the amendment.

Kathy Dahlkemper is up. She’s voting for the amendment. “Our amendment does not change current law regarding abortion.” It just keeps it as a practice for the wealthy, that’s all.

Lois Capps is speaking against the amendment. She created the language in the underlying bill that was the compromise. Says the amendment “restricts a women’s access to a legal medical procedure.” This would be the only language in the entire legislation that restricts a medical procedure and rations care.

Mike Pence: “I rise in support of this amendment but it will not change my opposition to the Pelosi health care bill.” Thanks, Bart Stupak!

Nita Lowey: “This is a disappointing distraction to the bill before us […] This amendment threatens the right and health of women to access a legal procedure paid for by their own premium funds.”

CommunityThe Bullpen

Stupak Amendment Debate Begins

Here it is. There will be 20 minutes of debate on the Stupak Amendment, and then, I assume, a vote. I’ll be updating.

…I just want to mention that Kathy Dahlkemper last night said that the exchanges should not offer abortion coverage because SCHIP doesn’t.

Yeah, that’s because it covers children.

Stupak says that companies could offer supplemental abortion coverage. Health insurance companies can offer policies in the exchange that cover abortion, they just can’t give that policy to people seeking affordability credits.

Diana DeGette is getting after it: “This would be the greatest restriction on the right to choose in all of our careers.”

DeGette takes down the supplemental insurance idea: “This is offensive to women… should people be subject to supplemental insurance for cancer treatment just in case they get cancer?” She gets applause at the end of her statement.

Joe Pitts, a Republican, is joining Stupak in controlling that side of the debate. He’s speaking now. “Every dollar in the public option is a federal dollar.” Bullshit. The public option is self-sustaining and paid for by premiums. This is radical rhetoric to say such a thing. Because women may drive to an abortion clinic on roads paid for by public highway funds, is that too illegal under the Stupak/Pitts logic?

Rosa DeLauro is speaking against the amendment.

Kathy Dahlkemper is up. She’s voting for the amendment. “Our amendment does not change current law regarding abortion.” It just keeps it as a practice for the wealthy, that’s all.

Lois Capps is speaking against the amendment. She created the language in the underlying bill that was the compromise. Says the amendment “restricts a women’s access to a legal medical procedure.” This would be the only language in the entire legislation that restricts a medical procedure and rations care.

Mike Pence: “I rise in support of this amendment but it will not change my opposition to the Pelosi health care bill.” Thanks, Bart Stupak!

Nita Lowey: “This is a disappointing distraction to the bill before us […] This amendment threatens the right and health of women to access a legal procedure paid for by their own premium funds.”

Cathy McMorris Rodgers is up. The Stupak anti-choice side is using women to make his points.

Brad Ellsworth, who was attempting the compromise, is speaking in favor of the amendment. His yes vote makes stopping this amendment tougher. “If this amendment passes today, I will support this bill.”

Barbara Lee: “This amendment takes us one step back to those dark days of back-alley abortions… this puts the religious views back into our politics. This is outrageous.”

Paul Ryan: He’s got his prop bill with him. Another yes on the amendment, no on the bill.

Jerry Nadler: “This amendment adds a new discriminatory measure against women…”

A quick note that this country has killed hundreds of thousands of people abroad, tortured, kidnapped people off the streets, etc., etc., and my federal funds paid that, and there’s no amendment to ensure no public funding of war or torture or rendition.

Michele Bachmann: “It all begins with life.”

Mike Quigley: “This amendment disrupts… equality.”

Jeff Fortenberry: slobbering all over Stupak. “Women deserve better.” How dare he.

Louise Slaughter, who cowardly took off in the Rules Committee when this amendment was allowed onto the floor: “30 or 40 years of our life is being cancelled out with this amendment.”

Jan Schakowsky: “This amendment goes way beyond current law. No woman plans an unplanned pregnancy. This will result in millions of women losing the coverage they already have.”

Dan Lipinski, another Dem voting for the Stupak Amendment and against women’s reproductive rights.

Chris Smith, a raging anti-choicer, quoting outrageous, untrue statistics on the House floor.

Here’s Marcy Kaptur, Michael Moore’s favorite Congresswoman, friend to labor everywhere, rising in support of the Stupak Amendment. Will Michael Moore cut Marcy Kaptur out of the DVD release of his movie after this attack on women’s reproductive choice?

…Diana DeGette is closing out the remarks. I believe we will have a vote right after this. “It is the intention of our opponent to stop coverage of a legal medical procedure on private plans and public plans on the exchange.”

Here comes a roll call…jittery…

Wait, so the roll call’s postponed after all that? I guess they’re holding it until the end of debate. We’ll have debate now on the substitute Republican amendment. Keep making those calls against the Stupak amendment! Per Chris and Natasha at Open Left:

Top Targets
Baird (WA-03): (202) 225-3536
Barrow (GA-12) (202) 225-2823
Berry (AR-01) (202) 225-4076
Cardoza (CA-18): (202) 225-6131
Castle: (DE-AL): 202.225.4165
Cuellar (TX-28) (202)-225-1640
Matheson (UT-02) (202) 225-3011
Michaud (ME-02): 202-225-6306
Perriello (VA-05): (202) 225-4711
Pomeroy (ND-AL) (202) 225-2611
Snyder (AR-02) (202) 225-2506
Tanner (TN-08) (202) 225-4714
Visclosky (IN-01) (202) 225-2461
Wilson (OH-06) (202) 225-5705

UPDATE: While we wait for the vote, there’s this news: John Shadegg (R) is going to vote present because he thinks Pelosi can’t get the bill without the amendment. But Stupak HIMSELF has said that the underlying bill will pass regardless of what happens on the amendment.

Believe it or not, saving women’s rights depends on John frickin’ Shadegg getting enough idiot Republicans to join him.

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David Dayen

David Dayen