Fact #1: A long and consistent series of federal court rulings since Roe v. Wade requires that broad statutory mandates for provision of health services must be construed to include mandated provision of abortions, unless the statute specifies otherwise.
Fact #2: In line with this legal precedent, the Community Health Centers program would be required to provide abortions now if not for the Hyde amendment.
Fact #3: The new funding appropriated for community health centers by the Senate health care bill is not covered by the Hyde amendment.
Fact #4: The Senate health care bill itself contains no relevant provision to prevent the direct use of federal funds for elective abortions.
Conclusion: In line with longstanding federal jurisprudence, the authorizing legislation for Community Health Centers creates a presumptive mandate for funding abortions without meaningful limit. Currently such funding is prevented only by the fact that funds under the Labor/HHS appropriations act are governed by the Hyde amendment. By appropriating new funds not covered by Hyde, and by failing to include any relevant abortion limitation of its own, the Senate health care bill as presently worded would disburse billions of dollars in federal funding that no one could prevent from being used for elective abortions.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Highlights from the USCCB Fact-sheet on Community Health Centers
You can find the whole document here