KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Some Abortion-Rights Advocates Find Health Debate Disheartening

"For some abortion-rights activists, the debate over health care reform has been frustrating, even disheartening, as they see their political allies on the defensive and their anti-abortion rivals on the attack," The Associated Press reports. A primary issue is that anti-abortion activists do not want abortion to be considered health care, while "[t]he abortion-rights movement says the procedure should indeed be considered a valid health care option, as worthy of public funding as any other form of care."

"Many abortion-rights advocates had hoped the health care debate would include a serious discussion of expanding access to abortion for low-income women, including the possible lifting of a 33-year-old ban on federal funding for the procedure except in cases of rape, incest and to save the mother's life. Instead, under pressure from anti-abortion conservatives, the Obama administration and majority Democrats in Congress have generally focused their recent public comments about abortion on promises that their various reform proposals will conform with that ban, known as the Hyde Amendment" (Crary, 9/22).

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