Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Bart Stupak: Obamacare HHS Mandate Violates Executive Order, Statutory Law

Sept. 4, 2012 - Former Congressman Bart Stupak, a pro-life Democrat of Michigan was a key swing vote for Obamacare in 2010, is saying that Obama's HHS mandate violates not only the Executive Order, but statutory law as well.

The HHS mandate went into effect on August 1st. Many religious institutions now have about a year "to figure out how they’re going to violate their consciences," as NY Cardinal Timothy Dolan put it.

The video was made during a Democrats For Life panel discussion at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina and posted to YouTube by RedState today. But Stupak's words are not really news: He came out months ago to express his disappointment in Obama's HHS mandate and the way it approaches contraception. On February 8, 2012, for example, he said the mandate was illegal when he was interviewed by Fox's Greta Van Susteren (see below).

On March 21, 2010, TheHill.com reported that Democrats "reached a deal on an executive order on abortion that could hand them a victory on healthcare," and that "Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) announced a deal at a press conference. He said the deal means Democrats will have the 216 votes they need to win a healthcare reform vote on the floor." 

The title of the Order is "Executive Order: Ensuring Enforcement And Implementation Of Abortion Restrictions In The Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act." The parts of the Executive Order that Stupak (and others) now object to are Paragraphs 2 and 3 of "Section 1. Policy."

"Bart Stupak was a vital swing vote in the Obamacare debate 2 years ago," says RedState.com today. In March of 2010, Stupak said he could not support Obamacare unless he could be assured that abortion would not be covered by the mandate. As RedState notes, "Following an Executive Order signed by President Obama that supposedly ensured that abortion would not be covered, Stupak declared victory for the pro-life movement. This in spite of the fact that many had said the Executive Order was toothless and would not prevent anything."

Bart Stupak Chump
Found at FireAndreaMitchell.com
Jill Stanek wrote an excellent critique of the Order. In essence, she called it meaningless. She wrote, in part, that "there is no operative language in the executive order. It merely observes there are two conscience laws, like observing there are two clouds floating by. Meanwhile, Obamacare states the HHS Secretary can mandate coverage of anything s/he decides is a 'preventative service' which Kathleen Sebelius has indeed deemed contraception, the morning after pill, the IUD, and sterilization."

Fox's Greta Van Susteren interviewed Stupak for "On the Record" on February 8, 2012. Stupak said this about the the HHS contraception mandate:

".... it dealt with not only abortion, but also with the conscience clause. In fact, if you look in section one of the executive order, it's – very clearly it says – it cites the Church amendment way back in 1973, all the way to the Weldon amendment, which was in legislation that President Obama signed in 2009, in which they talked about the conscience clause and the right of individuals and institutions such as the church to not provide these services if it violates their tenets of their faith and their principles and their conscience."

The mystery in all of this is why it took so long for Stupak and others to realize that they were fooled. The Executive Order was, after all, posted to the White House website on March 21, 2010 – the same day that Stupak had his victorious press conference. Stupak was suckered, lied to by Obama and his White House operatives.

Or - maybe not. Many accuse Stupak of selling his vote to support Obama's mandate in exchange for a lot of pork to his district in Michigan.