By Stephanie Condon
“After years of appealing for a middle ground on the issue of abortion, Democrats are now directly confronting the issue in fairly black-and-white terms in the context of their larger health care debate: Should Congress restrict access to insurance coverage for abortions? The abortion issue has finally reared its head after years of taking a backseat to priorities like war and the economy, leaving both supporters and opponents of abortion rights feeling that the Democrats’ middle-ground approach is falling short. The so-called Stupak amendment, which uses the House health care bill to restrict insurance coverage for abortions, has split open the debate to reveal complex but divided opinions on the subject of abortion. And as the public reconsiders the issue, interest groups on both sides of the debate are demanding more from Democrats.
‘I think it says they’re leaving women behind,’ said Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, on the other side of the issue. ‘Anti-choice forces in Washington are trying to use this important moment of health insurance reform to expand restrictions on abortion coverage in private insurance plans.'”