Leaders of the House Energy and Commerce Committee today welcomed strong bipartisan support in the U.S. House of Representatives for the Protect Life Act, H.R. 358. The bill, authored by Health Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-PA), was approved by the House by a vote of 251-172. The Protect Life Act prohibits federal funding of abortions and abortion coverage under the health care law and provides conscience protection for health care professionals. The language is consistent with the bipartisan Stupak-Pitts amendment adopted by the House in 2009.
Pitts said, "As recently as last year, a survey revealed that 67 percent of Americans support a ban on abortion funding. But, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act failed to include this prohibition, and that is why we are here today. President Obama indicated his support for upholding the ban on federal funding for abortion in health reform, and that is exactly what the Protect Life Act does."
Upton remarked, "I commend Chairman Pitts for his leadership on this important issue. The health care law contains numerous loopholes that allow federal subsidies to be used to purchase plans that pay for abortion. Today, the House fulfilled an important commitment in the Pledge to America, and respected the will of the majority of Americans who do not want their tax dollars used to fund abortions. I applaud my colleagues in the House for their support on this important legislation, and I urge the Senate to follow our lead to ensure Americans are not forced to subsidize abortions."