The Protect Life Act (H.R. 358)
The Protect Life Act, authored by Health Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-PA), respects the will of the majority of Americans and prohibits federal funding of abortions and abortion coverage under President Obama’s health care law.
The bill also provides conscience protection for health care professionals and ensures that private insurance companies are not forced to cover abortion.
The language is consistent with the Stupak-Pitts amendment to the health care law adopted by the House in 2009, but excluded from the final law.
Why is it necessary?
The president signed an executive order to address abortion-funding concerns in his health care bill, but the executive order is not law. It can be overturned by a judge or rescinded at any time by the current or any future president.
The health care law also includes numerous loopholes that allow federal subsidies to be used to purchase plans that pay for abortions.
Congress should send the Protect Life Act to the president’s desk to ensure the long-standing Hyde limitations continue to apply to the health law and codify the principles of the president’s executive order.
The legislation was approved by the House of Representatives on October 17, 2011, by a bipartisan vote of 251 to 172.