From Planned Parenthood:

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops met with leaders in the House of Representatives in their bid to eliminate women’s access to abortion care under health care reform. Their efforts are working. Representative Bart Stupak has introduced an amendment to the health care reform bill that will result in women losing health care coverage for abortion. Now, Congress is considering the Stupak amendment to the health care reform bill that will eliminate choice for millions of women.

We need you, and your friends and family to call your representative now at 202-730-9001 and ask him or her to oppose the Stupak amendment.

More importantly, from Crooks & Liars:

Rep. Bart Stupak, an antiabortion Democrat from Michigan, explained his amendment before the House Rules Committee just after midnight Saturday. He said it provides that federal subsidies cannot be used to purchase a health plan including coverage for abortions other than in cases of rape or incest.

The concession to allow a vote is significant because House Democrats aren’t allowing votes on any other substantive amendments, save one Republican amendment that is an alternative to the Democrats’ plan.

From USA Today: Nearly 90% of private health insurance policies now offer abortion coverage, and almost half of women with private insurance have it. But women covered under the new system would have to find supplemental insurance or pay out of pocket for an unanticipated procedure that can cost from hundreds to tens of thousands of dollars, depending on complexity. For anyone unable to afford it, this would amount to a de facto ban.

A quick excerpt on abortion and privilege from Melissa Harris-Lacewell:

It also works because abortion, like all American healthcare, is profoundly shaped by structures of privilege and access. Wealthy women in urban areas with private insurance who have long term relationships with physicians have more access to privacy and to termination services than do other women. Poor women, teenagers, rural women, women suffering with domestic violence, and uninsured women are much more likely to have to risk some level of public scrutiny of their decision to seek an abortion. They cannot request a D&C from their private provider, they must seek out a clinic. Even during the dark years of back alley abortions when all women seeking abortion were at risk, it was the most vulnerable women who carried the heaviest burden of infection, illness, and death.

Because women of privilege can keep their termination choices private while vulnerable women are exposed to public shaming, it becomes easier to believe that only those “other” women and “bad” women choose abortion.

If the lines are busy, you can also use to contact your representatives.

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