This just in.

Despite the president’s promise that no taxpayer money will be spent in funding elective abortions (i.e. those not done for genetic or severe health reasons), the latest report in USA today says that they are pushing a slight of hand to promote abortion as part of the health care bill.

USA Today spins it using the democratic talking points:

Now Stupak is back with an effort to cut off access to individuals to purchase insurance for abortion services, even if they pay for it themselves.

But that is not true.

The Christian Science Monitor points out the difference in the bills:

In sum, when it comes to coverage for abortions, in the House version you’d need two different policies. In the Senate version you’d just need to write two checks and anti-abortion House members think that’s getting awfully close to federal funding for the procedure.

In the Senate version, the money is put into a pot, so anyone taking that insurance is paying for elective abortions, since there is no stipulation that the increased fee for abortion coverage would be kept separate, so in reality the abortions could be subsidized by the general policy.

In the House version you need to buy a separate policy only to cover abortions.

By buying “abortion insurance” as a separate coverage, it ensures that that policy will cost enough to cover all the abortions done under that clause, and that might be steep, since the elderly, men, and the half of the US population that is prolife will probably not subsidize your abortions by buying this separate policy.

In other words, it will cost you more, because it is not being subsidized by others.

All of this is being done by stealth, since publicity will mean that the Catholic bishops will object openly.

And, of course, the press is obediently spinning the “choice” that if you oppose health care “reform” you are killing babies, so how can you call yourself pro-life?

The reality is that the Democrats could easily put in a ban for elective abortions, but they chose not to: they would rather blackmail the prolife Democrats into supporting the bill than to bother to change the bill.

One suspects this was the idea in the first place, by a President who as State Senator actually voted against doing late term abortions on viable children via a dangerous (to the mother) procedure known as “partial birth abortion”. (How dangerous to the mom? Well, we don’t do this procedure even to remove a dead baby, because of the risk of uterine perforation and retained fetal parts).

Of course, this is the tip of the iceburg by a president who removed the “conscience clause” from medical personnel as soon as he took the oath of office. Now, if you refuse to give an abortion pill (i.e.”plan b”) on demand, you can be fired, and your only recourse it to sue using the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which may or may not get you your job back.

So much for tender consciences.

But of course, this is only a prelude.

Does the Obama health care bill cover “assisted suicide”?

Bioethicist Wesley Smith pointed out that the bill written last November does include a conscience clause, but that it also included this:

this clause under the section 1323 of the bill creating the public option (p. 183), beginning at page 186:

(F) PROTECTING ACCESS TO END OF LIFE CARE.—A community health insurance option offered under this section shall be prohibited from limiting access to end of life care.

If assisted suicide, or even euthanasia, are legally considered forms of “end of life care” in a particular state–as it is now in Oregon, Washington, and Montana–it seems to me that the area’s community health insurance option would be required to provide “access” to it under this clause. How else can the provision be read?

One of the dirty little secrets is that most “assisted suicides” are not of those dying in pain, but of those depressed and worried they will be a  burden to others.

Seeing that the Netherlands, over ten years, has slid down the slippery slope from “hard cases” to infanticide of handicapped infants to discussing how to give those over 70 and “tired of living” the needles, one simply cannot be complacent in these things….

In the meanwhile, hanging over the head of doctors is that 20percent cut in Medicaid reimbursements, which some think was passed simply as a way to keep doctor’s organizations quiet on their opposition to the present bill.

You don’t want our shiny new bill, take that, greedy docs. Support us or you go broke under the present system, while we demonize you for refusing to treat poor people.

Sigh.

The fact that it costs more to do the paperwork to bill for Medicaid than you receive back (when you finally get paid, months later) doesn’t seem to be in the discussion at all.

After all, the lawyers who sue and the bureaucrats who process the complicated forms will benefit from the new bill, and they vote (and contribute money) to the Democratic party.

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Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. She blogs at HeyDoc Xanga blog.

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