Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Wash. Post: Health-Care Reform Efforts Marred by Abortion Dispute, by Dan Eggen & Rob Stein:
President Obama, who has vowed to find common ground on culture-war issues, finds himself in the middle of a classic Washington dispute over abortion that is further undermining support among conservative Democrats for his ambitious health-care reform efforts.
Abortion is not explicitly mentioned in any of the major health-care bills under consideration in Congress. But abortion opponents charge that the legislation would make abortion both more widely available and more common by requiring insurance plans to pay for the procedures and providing government funding to subsidize plans that pay for them.
White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said this week that decisions on specific benefits such as abortion coverage should be "left to medical experts in the field," referring to a proposed advisory board that would recommend minimum levels of coverage for private insurers.