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Health exchange gets zapped with abortion language

The very idea of the Health Exchange is to offer choices in all aspects of health care. This amendment is only meant to limit those choices.

This is very disappointing.

(MN)House members voted 71-58 Monday afternoon to ban health insurance companies from offering abortion coverage in the plans that will be sold on the state’s new online health insurance marketplace.

Rep. Patti Fritz
Rep. Patti Fritz

Sponsored by Democrat Patti Fritz (Faribault), this amendment may seek to protect the “sanctity of life”, but in reality it infringes on Constitutional rights and gives the large number of pro-choice advocates that happen to disagree with an absence of choices, a reason to question its support of the House majority.

It was suspected, and is now clear, that the Minnesota House has a clear majority that adheres to the dictates of the MCCL (Minnesota Concerned Citizens for Life). 

I had assumed that in a year where rape is “redefined”, where trans-vaginal ultrasounds are promoted as a reproductive need, where the Violence Against Women Act gets questioned as to authenticity, and where contraception is being warped back to the 1950’s….that in such a year, we would not have to revisit the Constitutional right of choice in America. Especially when dealing with a law that’s main purpose is to give people without health insurance an affordable chance to obtain it.

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Abortions have gone way down in Minnesota. And as long as we don’t fool around with contraceptive use, they will continue to go down. Nobody favors abortion as any kind of “family planning” method. No…they do not.

But choice has a unique history….an emotional history. And too many people have paid high prices to have it questioned once again. 

The Health Exchange bill does not promote abortion. The Health Exchange bill assumes that the law of the land on abortion will continue to be the law of the land. 

Adding this amendment is wrong. It adds nothing to the bill but divisive words. The very idea of the Health Exchange is to offer choices in all aspects of health care. This amendment is only meant to limit those choices.

The hope right now is that the Senate will have a clean bill and drop this amendment in conference. The Health Exchange bill needs to be about clear and complete choices for health care.

It must not be about forcing people to accept someone else’s view about what health care should be.

This is about health in all its aspects and about rights that are supposed to be protected.

Disappointment indeed.

This post was written David Mindeman and originally published on mnpACT! Progressive Political Blog. Follow Dave on Twitter: @newtbuster.

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