Since health care is one of the big issues of the moment, it isn’t surprising that the folks at the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice has weighed in. For them, the sine qua non of the whole debate is the one thing most congresscritters really don’t want to get into:
Treatments and services that promote reproductive health throughout a woman’s life must be part of any national health plan. These include contraceptive services, maternity care, pre- and post-partum care, abortion care, and screenings for sexually transmitted infections and reproductive cancers.
Most of that is not controversial, and undoubtedly would be included in any federal plan. “Abortion care,” on the other hand, obviously is, especially because federal funding for abortion has been banned since the late 1970s (which is hardly inexplicable–I don’t think I’ve ever seen a poll that didn’t show a majority of Americans were against federal funds going to pay for abortions). Nevertheless, despite the fact that RCRC is demanding a significant change, opposed by the majority of citizens, of a policy that has been in place for decades, guess who it is that’s “politicizing” the debate:
As Congress moves forward with legislation to reform the nation’s health care system, we can expect a few, powerful organizations including the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to politicize women’s reproductive health care by pressing divisive debates around abortion. The bishops have warned that including abortion as a health care benefit will jeopardize passage of national health care reform. But it’s the bishops and their allies who will block health care reform if it includes comprehensive reproductive health services.
The ones pressing the “divisive debates,” of course, are the radical pro-abortion advocates–RCRC, NARAL Pro-Choice America, Planned Parenthood, etc.–who have chafed under the restrictions of the Hyde Amendment for years. Planned Parenthood, especially, is drooling at the prospect of gaining even more access to the federal trough than it already has. What’s also interesting here is that while they could have mentioned National Right to Life, the American Life League, or any of several other pro-life organizations, they confined themselves to naming the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, and imply that the bishops (and their allies, of course) have some kind of demonic power to block legislation, which would probably be news to the big Democratic majorities in Congress. Instead of suggesting dark machinations by evil right-wing forces, however, RCRC would do better to wonder why it is that most Americans have no use for the policy that they are seeking to push on to the taxpayers.