With 60 votes needed to pass the Nelson/Hatch amendment to Obamacare to prohibit huge federal subsidies for abortion, it is not surprising that the amendment failed on a 54 to 45 vote. Seven Democrats voted in favor of Nelson/Hatch and two Republicans opposed the pro-life amendment.
Not at all surprising is that our own Senators, Kohl and Feingold, voted in favor of abortion coverage. This in spite of comments in early September at a Marquette University forum at which Kohl publicly stated that he opposed using health care reform to provide access to abortion. Senator Kohl’s staff has essentially stonewalled anyone who has tried to meet directly with Kohl to follow-up on his comments.
The health care reform battle is not over. Doug Johnson, Legislative Director for National Right to Life states: “Now, the vote on cloture on the bill itself will become the key vote on whether to put the federal government into the abortion business. We will oppose cloture on the bill, which would require 60 affirmative votes. In addition, a number of pro-life democrats in the House, who supported passage of health care legislation on November 7, will not vote for the Senate bill in its current form. So, this is a long way from over.”
What will Senator Nelson and the six colleagues who supported his amendment do on cloture? Stay tuned.