Rep. Bart Stupak explains in Newsweek his disappointment over the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ reaction when he asked their support for “an executive order confirming that no federal money would support abortion:”
No, no, no, no, they said. We need statutory law. But an executive order can have the full force of law, I said. Lincoln used one to free the slaves. George W. Bush used one to block stem-cell research using human embryos. And President Obama assures me that this is “ironclad.” Besides, I said, it’s time to negotiate or lose our chance to shape the bill. Help me with it? No, they said. Won’t you at least look at it? No.
That call changed my relationship with the pro-life movement. In the 18 years I’ve been in Congress, pro-life Democrats like me have delivered, working out compromises that protect human life. Now we had the most important piece of legislation for our movement yet—with pregnancy prevention, prenatal and postnatal care, and care for kids—and we couldn’t get support.
It’s that people tried to use abortion as a tool to stop health-care reform, even after protections were added.
Stupak accuses bishops … of using abortion to oppose health care reform.