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

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

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
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

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

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

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
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


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
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.

Like this story? Your $10 tax-deductible contribution helps support our research, reporting, and analysis.

For more information or to schedule an interview with contact

Follow Rebecca Sive on twitter: @@RebeccaSive

  • harry834

    I’m not a Republican, but I’m on their email list.

    You know the GOP is famous for hating government spending. So what do pro-choice Republicans have to say about the idea of paying for abortions?

    Remember, not all pro-choice Republicans will take the same position, but here is what the Republican Majority for Choice says:

  • harry834

    Bart Stupak shows that being pro-choice may not correlate with the R or D (even if that is often the case)

  • pamgreen

    If the true goal of the GOP (or anyone else) were to reduce government spending, then they would promote universal knowledge of and access to contraception, because every-single-time use of contraception would eliminate 90 to 95% of the unwanted pregnancies that create the need for abortion. Contraception should be subsidized as heavily as necessary to allow such universal access by the non-affluent.
    If the true goal is to reduce government spending, then abortion would be universally available and subsidized as heavily as necessary. Abortion , especially early abortion, is far less expensive than the combination of essential pre-natal care and childbirth care for a normal delivery of a healthy child. The costs really soar for an abnormal delivery and soar even more for a premature or defective child, ie for any birth requiring neo-natal intensive care or requiring special care for the remainder of life. Abortion is far less costly than Welfare for 18 years for a child whose mother is unable or unwilling to support it and whose father is likewise unable or unwilling or simply unidentified. Abortion is far less costly than providing K-12 public education for an additional child. Abortion is far less costly than foster care for an abandoned child or one who must be taken from negligent of abusive parents (a higher risk for the unwanted unwelcome birth).
    It would of course also greatly reduce government spending if the fathers of children, whether their conception was wanted or not, were absolutely required to provide fully one half the cost of rearing them. Every live born child should have paternity established (via DNA testing against all suspected possible daddies named by the mother) and from that point on child support would be garnished from daddy’s earnings the same as income tax and other taxes are withheld. There should be no esape from child support.
    Of course if every male knew for certain that he would be required to provide 18 years support for any children sired, I suspect that most would have an epiphany of enlightenment (a) that using a condom doesn’t spoil the fun as much as worrying about child support would do and (b) that abortion is a sacred right to be protected in every possible way.

  • pamgreen

    The general Republican Anti-Choice credo makes it impossible for me to ever support or vote for any Republican candidate. It also has to make me pretty selective about the Democrats as well.
    Women, we need a national campaign to ensure that Stupak and Pitts are un-elected next time they run. Every woman in the nation must let her own elected legislators know that she is a committed Pro-Choice voter and will absolutely vote out anyone who supports any form of Anti-Choice legislation.