House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH), in a meeting with President Obama and Congressional leaders at the White House today, asked President Obama to provide the American people with a progress report on the implementation of his Executive Order which purports to ban taxpayer-funding of abortions. Leader Boehner noted that in her recent “progress report” to Congress on the implementation of ObamaCare, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius did not make any mention of efforts by the administration to implement the president’s Executive Order (EO).
Abortion opponents widely viewed the EO as a disingenuous maneuver made by the Administration in the final hours of the health care fight to buy off “pro-life” Democrats instead of passing the anti-abortion Stupak amendment, which would have prevented federal subsidies for abortion under ObamaCare. A recent analysis by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops confirms that under the new law, “federal subsidies will be used to help expand access nationwide to abortion coverage” and that all Americans, regardless of one’s personal convictions, will be forced to “pay a nominal fee for full access to elective abortions - not to be estimated at less than ‘$1 per enrollee, per month.’”
While the Obama Administration plows ahead on implementing what it regards as the “popular” aspects of ObamaCare, Administration officials have been coy about their aims for putting into practice the President’s EO on taxpayer-funding of abortion. Leader Boehner is still awaiting a response, other than a cryptic reply that EO guidance was still being developed, to the questions he raised in his May 13 letter to Secretary Sebelius:
Has the Department provided guidance to states to implement the president’s Executive Order on abortions? When does the Administration expect to issue the directive on abortions? Will the new federal high-risk pools touted by the Administration also ensure that abortions will not be covered? Millions of Americans care deeply about this aspect of the new law and its implementation, and no progress report is complete without detailed information about it.
The answers to the aforementioned questions will determine the extent to which taxpayer dollars fund abortions, which is why it is so troubling that the Administration continues to kick the can down the road on this issue.
House Republicans continue to stand with the American people, to repeal and replace ObamaCare with commonsense solutions focused on lowering health care costs and protecting life. The Republican health care solution would codify the Hyde Amendment and prohibit all authorized and appropriated federal funds from being used to pay for abortion. And under the Republican plan, any health plan that includes abortion coverage may not receive federal funds.