Mr. Stupak: Here’s a Senate Speech You’ll Need To Hear

Rebecca Sive

No one reading this has forgotten that the House passed a healthcare “reform” bill that includes the Stupak Amendment. Here's a speech Congressman Stupak needs to hear.

No one reading this has forgotten that, a couple Saturday nights ago,
the House of Representatives passed a healthcare “reform” bill that included
your so-called Stupak Amendment.

In doing this, the House codified an American healthcare system, what an
oxymoron that is, in which women’s very lives are subject to the whims of
weak-kneed, sexist, soulless, woman-hating politicians–led by you–who don’t
believe the Supreme Court really meant it, when it said there is a right to privacy under the U.S.
Constitution that guarantees the right to
obtain an abortion
.

 

For, after all, this is the
true intent of your bill: to make legal abortion unattainable.

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Clearly, you, along with your Republican and Democratic pals, don’t care whether American women live or
die.  

Now that your nefarious deed is done, and the nation’s attention turns
to the Senate this Saturday night,
you, your pals, the nation, and the Senate need to hear the speech presented below. I hope someone will give it. And I
hope, fervently, that you will listen, very, very carefully: Listen
and learn. Take-in what you have wrought, and then think again.
_____________________________________________________________________

My dear Senate colleagues: 
Yes, we need a healthcare
bill
with a public option, in order to provide a mechanism for insuring the millions
of Americans who are uninsured, along with those who can’t access the private
market.

But we only need a public option if it is truly neutral and doesn’t impose
ideology on health care.

We only need a public option
if it provides women’s reproductive health care on exactly the same terms as
all other health care is provided.

Colleagues, a public option that would offer—as a substitute for this
fair and equal access—an opportunity to buy a rider to cover the cost of an
abortion, is no option at all, no option of any kind.

For, after all, who plans to have an abortion? For, after all, is there
any other legal medical procedure for which such a plan would ever be proposed?
For, after all, isn’t this writing into law the notion that women deserve it. It’s their fault if they become pregnant and don’t want (or can’t) carry
the baby to term.

Colleagues, this is the worst form of discrimination. We can’t abide it,
and say that we hold our Constitution dear.

Colleagues:  Remember this:
The rich will always be able to buy a safe, if not a legal, abortion. The poor
won’t. 

Do we want then, as a consequence —by
the force of
our actions— to
condone a return to back-alley butchery, because poor women, or women who
didn’t expect to become pregnant, (and, thus, didn’t buy a rider to cover an
abortion procedure; how stupid a concept is this), seek help anywhere they can?

Colleagues, I say to you that, if we do this, we will have blood on our
hands.

Colleagues: 
Bear-this-in-mind: The Stupak
Amendment is the worst form of chicanery. For it strains credulity to believe
that someone who opposes government control of healthcare would author or vote
for this bill, when the bill’s effect is just the opposite.

Truly, Mr. Stupak—and I hope you’re
listening—had something else in mind, something
else
we can’t abide: overturning the rule of the highest court in the land.

And, colleagues, worst yet: If Rep.
Stupak and his co-conspirators think that we, the U.S. Senate, will reject any
public option that limits abortion coverage, he still wins. What’s that old expression:  Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me. Well, if we
do this, that “me” will be the whole U.S. Congress
.

My dear colleagues:  This isn’t what we were elected to do.
This isn’t policymaking. This is hypocrisy of the most blatant and dangerous
sort. This is politics of the worst sort: 
mean-spirited, morally indefensible, and built on the backs of the
defenseless.

 

My dear colleagues, let us, instead, lead the way today, just as the
Congress and states did when the 14th Amendment, the one that helped
free the slaves and stated the right to privacy, came-into-being, and as the
Supreme Court did, when it recognized, in Roe v. Wade, that that century-old American constitutional
right
includes the right to terminate a pregnancy.

And when we do this, know this, Mr. Stupak:
you are ever so wrong, if you think that the U.S. Senate will fail the nation’s
women today. There is too much at stake for all of us.

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