Some Anti-Choice Democrats Can’t Stomach HR 3

HR 3 – the appalling “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act” – is so bad that a gaggle of anti-choice Democrats refused to vote for it. Fourteen Democrats who voted for the Stupak Amendment during health care reform voted against Chris Smith’s HR 3, saying it just went too far for them. (The Stupak Amendment would restrict coverage of abortion on the state insurance exchanges to the very few exceptions under the Hyde Amendment – abortions due to rape, incest, and endangerment of the life of the woman). Politico reports that:

One of those Democrats, Rep. Tim Ryan, said: ‘I’ve always supported the notion that taxpayer dollars should not go towards funding abortions. What I don’t support is creating a new bureaucratic boondoggle that forces millions of private small businesses to waste amazing amounts of time going over the fine print of their health insurance policies because Republicans in Congress can’t resist politicizing an issue that’s already been laid to rest.’

Both Reps. Sanford Bishop and Silvestre Reyes said the bill went
too far restricting abortion and cited the small business burden for their ‘no’ votes as well.

Of the 16 Democrats who voted with the Republicans for HR 3, RCRC met with three of their offices to  discuss why the bill should be defeated.  The three – Jason Altmire (PA), Marcy Kaptur (OH), and Henry Cuellar (TX) – were subject to pro-HR3 ad campaigns in their districts sponsored by the Family Research Council. They told us they appreciated the information and our letter from 200 clergy but could not break ranks and vote against the bill. No “pro-choice” Republicans were able to withstand their party’s pressure, so all Republicans voted in favor.


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