Congressman John Boehner (R-West Chester) released the following statement on reports that the Department of Health & Human Services is providing $160 million to the state of Pennsylvania to set up a new high-risk insurance pool program that would cover any abortion legal in the state:
"This is the boldest admission yet from the Obama administration that the President's Executive Order on taxpayer-funded abortion was a sham. The fact that the high-risk pool insurance program in Pennsylvania will use federal taxpayer dollars to fund abortions is unconscionable.
"Just last month at the White House I asked President Obama to provide the American people with a progress report on the implementation of his Executive Order, which purports to ban taxpayer-funding of abortions. Unfortunately, the President provided no information, and the American people are still waiting for answers.
"House Republicans are fighting to repeal this life-threatening law and replace it with responsible solutions focused on lowering costs and expanding access to quality, affordable care while protecting the dignity of all human life. The Republican plan would codify the Hyde amendment and prohibit all authorized and appropriated federal funds from being used to pay for abortion. And under the Republican plan, any health plan that includes abortion coverage may not receive federal funds."
NOTE: President Obama pledged that under his health care plan "no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions, and federal conscience laws will remain in place." In a May 13 letter to HHS Secretary Katherine Sebelius, Congressman Boehner raised a number of questions that still remain unanswered, including one specifically on high-risk pool insurance programs:
"Has the Department provided guidance to states to implement the president's Executive Order on abortions? When does the Administration expect to issue the directive on abortions? Will the new federal high-risk pools touted by the Administration also ensure that abortions will not be covered? Millions of Americans care deeply about this aspect of the new law and its implementation, and no progress report is complete without detailed information about it."