Catholic Bishops Oppose Health Bill, While Other Catholic Groups Offer Support

McClatchy: "The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said Monday it opposes the Democratic health care plan heading for a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives because of its language on abortion. The group noted that it liked the House health care bill because it would continue the strict ban on federal financing of abortion. But it said the Senate version would open the door to federal financing … The Catholic bishops have lobbied for a health care plan to extend insurance to the uninsured — but only if it maintains the longstanding U.S. policy against federal financing of abortion." Senate Democrats say their bill would not allow federal funding for abortion (Thomma, 3/16).

The Hill: "'This is not quibbling over technicalities,' Cardinal [Francis] George, [USCCB president] said. 'The deliberate omission in the Senate Bill of the necessary language that could have taken this moral question off the table and out of play leaves us still looking for a way to meet the President’s and our concern to provide health care for those millions whose primary care physician is now an emergency room doctor'" (Zimmerman, 3/15).

Related KHN news summary on a different group: Major Catholic Health Group Supports Democrats' Health Reform (3/15)

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