In the interview, the former White House chief of staff reveals that there were not enough votes for ObamaCare without support from the “pro-lifers” who ended up voting yes. Former-Rep. Bart Stupak has claimed that ObamaCare was going to pass, and that the executive order signed by the President was the best they could get in terms of restricting abortion funding. This exposes his claims as a myth.
Emanuel’s claim is transcribed below:
Carol Moseley Braun: …Stupak-Pitts took from women in the new health plan the right to choose, or at least to have it covered…. You wound up being the person tagged with making that, quote, compromise happen….
Rahm Emanuel: …That is a fair question, and I’ll explain it. President Obama was determined to get his healthcare bill passed. There were 14 votes that were holding up, and my job as chief-of-staff was to help the president get – after a hundred years of waiting for comprehensive reform of healthcare – to help him get that legislation.
Carol Moseley-Braun: And so you threw women under the bus?
Rahm Emanuel: And it was hanging in balance by 14 votes. I came up with an idea for an executive order to allow the Stupak Amendment not to exist by law but by executive order, and it was good enough that Nancy Pelosi, Jan Schakowsky – here in Chicago, Rosa DeLauro, Anna Eshoo – a number of women who are held – Nita Lowey – who are held up as honors by people like NARAL and Planned Parenthood, who supported that bill and supported the way to make progress.
As you can see, the executive order was what Stupak and his fellow traitors took in exchange for their support of ObamaCare. Emanuel makes clear that the Stupak-Pitts amendment does not exist by law, but rather by a meaningless and non-binding. And it was good enough, as Emanuel says, for Nancy Pelosi! Unbelievable.
Stupak has remarked “By then I had realized that health-care reform would pass, so rather than vote no and lose my power to add pro-life protections, I gathered my coalition to try to reach an agreement with President Obama: an executive order confirming that no federal money would support abortion. On that Sunday, seven or eight of us pro-lifers sat with silver urns of coffee, yellow legal pads, and red pens in a discreet room away from the White House, hammering out the language.”
As Stanek observes, Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards applauded the passage of ObamaCare, as she knew that the executive order issued was meaningless, saying “What the president’s executive order did not do is include the complete and total ban … that Congressman Bart Stupak (D–MI) had insisted upon….So while we regret that this proposed Executive Order has given the imprimatur of the president to Senator Nelson’s language, it is critically important to note that it does not include the Stupak abortion ban.”
Head over to Jill Stanek’s post for video of the exchange with Rahm.
Speaker John Boehner’s blog has picked up the story, saying:
Dem Claim: ObamaCare does not promote taxpayer funding of abortion, and legislation is not needed to keep abortions from being funded by taxpayer dollars under ObamaCare.
FACT: In a recent interview with the Chicago Tribune editorial board, facing questions about his commitment to the pro-abortion cause, former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel emphasized that the Executive Order on abortion signed by President Obama in March 2010 – ostensibly to eliminate the need for the pro-life Stupak Amendment to be attached to ObamaCare – does not carry the force of law, and as such, has the seal of approval of former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and others who oppose a ban on taxpayer funding of abortion (Chicago Tribune, 1/14/11). Emanuel also seemed to acknowledge that the EO was a maneuver by the Obama Administration to circumvent a bipartisan majority in the House – and the will of the American people – which supported the pro-life Stupak amendment.
Shame on Stupak and his coalition for their lies about the ObamaCare vote. Luckily, they now have plenty of time to think about their actions — out of office.