House Committee Passes Capps Amendment, Protects Abortion Coverage in Private Plans

Jodi Jacobson

In its ongoing markup tonight of the Affordable Health Choices Act, the House Energy and Commerce Committee just passed--by a vote of 30 to 28--an amendment offered by Congresswoman Lois Capps (D-CA) that would protect the ability of private insurance plans to provide coverage for abortion care, whether or not other aspects of the plan receive government subsidies.

Update: 11:28 PM, July 30th 2009.  Pitts revoted; fails! Waxman calls for reconsideration of Pitts Amendment; amendment then fails on voice vote 29 to 30.

Update, 11:09 PM, July 30th 2009.  Amendment by Stupak, Pitts (R-PA) and Terry (R-NE) to apply (yet another) conscience clause to the Energy and Commerce bill passes by voice vote.  Waxman encourages colleagues to vote in favor.

Update, 10:06 PM, July 30th 2009.  The Pitts Amendent passes; appears to prohibit mandatory abortion coverage.  More analysis to come.

In its ongoing markup tonight of the Affordable Health Choices Act, the House Energy and Commerce Committee just passed–by a vote of 30 to 28–an amendment offered by Congresswoman Lois Capps (D-CA) that appears to protect the ability of private insurance plans to provide coverage for abortion care, whether or not other aspects of the plan receive government subsidies. Funding would be segregated.

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The vote was largely along party lines, with 6 Democrats lead by Michigan Congressman Bart Stupak, of the Democratic Pro-life Caucus, leading the charge to defeat the amendment.

Further analysis on these amendments forthcoming.

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