Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- A nonpartisan web site that routinely serves as a watchdog for public officials, the media and political groups says President Barack Obama has it wrong. FactCheck.org says the current health care plans pending in Congress do authorize abortion funding, contrary to Obama's claims otherwise.
"Despite what Obama said, the House bill would allow abortions to be covered by a federal plan and by federally subsidized private plan," the web site concludes.
At issue are concerns from pro-life groups that the government-run health care plans would include abortion funding and coverage. Obama has said they don't and gone as far as accusing pro-life groups of lying about the legislation.
The FactCheck web site, run by staff at the University of Pennsylvania, says "it's true that House and Senate legislation would allow a new 'public' insurance plan to cover abortions." The House bill does so "despite" the addition of the Capps amendment that pro-abortion lawmakers say prohibits abortion funding.
"Obama has said in the past that 'reproductive services' would be covered by his public plan, so it’s likely that any new federal insurance plan would cover abortion unless Congress expressly prohibits that," FactCheck adds.
That mirrors what National Right to Life and other pro-life groups have said, with NRLC legislative director Douglas Johnson explaining, "the bill backed by the White House (H.R. 3200) explicitly authorizes the government plan to cover all elective abortions."
Tort reform is one step that could help reduce health care costs.
As a woman, I know that this has affected me personally. My first and my last Cesareans were done purely for medicolegal reasons. They had nothing to do with my ability to birth my baby naturally. And even though my first Cesarean was 20 years ago, it seems not much has changed. Recently one of my young friends, a mom in her 20s was pressured into having another Cesarean because her doctor simply wouldn't here of her trying a natural labor and delivery.
So this is the type of issue that affects the lives of women on a very personal and real level today!! And it's one President Obama needs to address this evening.
Linda Lipsen, senior vice president of public affairs with the American Association for Justice, said those figures mean tort reform just isn't worth it.
"The current health care debate is focused on two tenets: lowering costs while improving care and covering the uninsured," Lipsen said. "Changing the legal system will not accomplish these goals and only make it harder for those injured by medical negligence, through no fault of their own, to seek legal recourse."
However, the CBO estimate did not account for defensive spending, which most proponents say eats up the real costs. In its 2003 report, HHS estimated that, between malpractice costs and defensive medicine, reasonable tort reforms would save the federal government between $28.1 billion and $50.6 billion a year. Projected out over 10 years, that's far more than CBO-estimated savings for replacing fee-for-service with bundled payments ($18.6 billion), setting up a health IT system ($34 billion) or a tax on the wealthy or insurance companies (about $100 billion).
"Even if it costs 2 cents, why wouldn't we want to eliminate those costs?" asked Darren McKinney, a spokesman for the American Tort Reform Association. "In the grand scheme of things, it's not the mother lode of costs, but it's certainly not insignificant."
A strong argument can be made for the proposition that Senator Kennedy should not have been allowed a Catholic funeral-- not because of his personal failings, but because his public stands put him in conflict with the Church. Unlike private sins, which can be absolved in sacramental Confession, serious public sins require some form of public amendment, to address the scandal that they create. Ted Kennedy never recanted his support for abortion, and so he remained in open conflict with his Church. To allow a public funeral for him meant allowing for the perception that the Church is not really serious about the abortion issue, and thus creating a new public scandal.
A "lost opportunity?" A "great disappointment?" The cardinal's language suggests that Kennedy's failure lay only in what he failed to do to save the lives of the unborn. In fact, Senator Kennedy never lost any opportunity to advance the cause of unrestricted abortion on demand. He compiled a "perfect" 100% voting record, as judged by the abortion industry. He savaged Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork, denouncing the legal scholar especially for his pro-life views. He accepted the "Champion of Choice" award from the National Abortion Rights Action League. During his wake at Boston's Kennedy Library, a woman wearing a "fetal feet" lapel pin was stopped at the door and informed that pro-lifers would not be allowed to view the Senator's casket.
CORPUS CHRISTI, TX, September 8, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Bishop Rene Henry Gracida, retired Roman Catholic Bishop of Corpus Christi, Texas has denounced the "scandal" of the Kennedy funeral. Writing on his blog, Bishop Gracida said, "There was so much wrong with the funeral liturgy celebrated in Boston last Saturday for Senator Edward Moore Kennedy that I hardly know where to begin."
If a Catholic is engaged in politics, the Church has a right and a duty to request coherence from this person. If, regrettably, this Catholic refuses to be coherent, the Church has the right and the duty to refuse him the reception of the Holy Eucharist as it is established in Canon 915: "Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion."
In the same way that publicly incoherent Catholics might be denied communion, these persons can also be denied ecclesiastical funeral rites. The Code of Canon Law establishes, Can. "1184 §1. Unless they gave some signs of repentance before death, the following must be deprived of ecclesiastical funerals: 3/ other manifest sinners who cannot be granted ecclesiastical funerals without public scandal of the faithful."
We are informed by the press that the person who received the recent funeral in Boston gave some signs of repentance; but those signs were not specific at all with regards to the many grave and public violations that he committed against the teachings of the Church. Even if the signs of repentance would have been judged sufficient by competent local ecclesiastical authority, the problem of the scandal remains because the ordinary of the place where the funeral was officiated could not have been ignorant that the funeral was going to be turned into a celebration of the life of that particular person.
Here we should also remember the norm of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal that establishes: "382. At the Funeral Mass there should, as a rule, be a short homily, but never a eulogy of any kind." There is ample public evidence provided by the press that this norm was not respected in a recent Boston funeral and that fact is in itself a reasonable source of scandal.