July 29th, 2009
08:45 AM ET
7 months ago

FRC spot looks to tie public option to abortion funding

FRC has not yet released the size of its ad buy.
FRC has not yet released the size of its ad buy.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Family Research Council is launching a television ad attacking a public health insurance option as a plan that will shortchange seniors and increase access to abortion, as social and religious conservatives ramp up a pushback against President Obama's health care reform package.

The group said it plans to buy air time in five states with moderate Democratic senators, most of whom are considered possible swing votes on health care: Pennsylvania (Arlen Specter and pro-life Bob Casey), Arkansas (Blanche Lincoln), Alaska (Mark Begich), Louisiana (Mary Landrieu), and Nebraska (Ben Nelson).

In the ad, an elderly couple is shown sitting at their kitchen table. "And to think that Planned Parenthood is included in the government-run health care plan and spending tax dollars on abortions," a man says to his wife. "They won't pay for our surgery, but we are forced to pay for our abortions."

The voice-over tag line: "Our greatest generation denied care. Our future generation denied life. Call your senator. Stop the government takeover of health care."

The current bill does not contain any provision for taxpayer-funded abortions. Instead, the current House version of the package would create a panel that would weigh what procedures might be covered - an approach White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs has said is the best way to take on the issue. Gibbs told reporters earlier this month that when it came to abortion - or other, less controversial coverage questions - it was "better left to experts in the medical field to determine how best and what procedures to cover."

President Obama has largely tried to steer clear of the thorny debate, but has acknowledged the concerns of abortion opponents. "I'm pro-choice, but I think we also have the tradition in this town, historically, of not financing abortions as part of government-funded healthcare," he told CBS News last week. "My main focus is making sure that people have options of high-quality care at the lowest possible price."

The administration's hands-off approach has not been enough for abortion foes, who say that in the absence of language explicitly prohibiting the use of taxpayer dollars, the procedure will be included in a government-run health care plan - a development which would have to be squared with the Hyde amendment, which bars the use of federal funds to pay for abortion services. So far, efforts to insert that prohibition into the plan being considered by Congress, including a push last month by a group of House Democrats, have been unsuccessful.


Filed under: Health care • Political ads
soundoff (52 Responses)
  1. Peejay

    More doubletalk from the fringe.

    July 29, 2009 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  2. WhoCares?

    Wow..Using the brutal issue of Abortion to deny American Citizens affordable Healthcare.

    Our congress is denying the American people the healthcare THAT THEY GIVE TO THEMSELVES AND THEIR CHILDREN.

    Can you even comprehend that? "Yes...We love our healthcare and our children are kept healthy by it.....But for you people...NA...Won't work for you!".

    EVIL...Just pure and utter Evil.

    July 29, 2009 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  3. Why am I not surprised?

    Soo...they'll use lies and suppositions to derail the bill...I mean, why not – it worked with Prop 8 in California, right?

    July 29, 2009 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  4. russell

    This is why America can't get ahead , just like the republicans now this group constantly tries to stand in the way of progress , the smart thing to do is come up with solutions to our problems ( healthcare is everyones's problem in Americas ) they need to stop wasting money trying to derail the process and learn to help the process , and that partly the reason for our problems....

    July 29, 2009 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  5. Minnesotan

    The Family Research Council is the biggest contributor to stagnation, lies, corruption and incompetence in Washington. They were big supporters of Bush and every one of his innumerable FAILED POLICIES. These cretins need to be audited, investigated and thrown in jail. Their 'activism' is far more detrimental to America than Acorn ever was.

    July 29, 2009 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  6. John H

    Muslim extremists, Christian extremists - they are all the same – DANGEROUS! This fringe of the America populus refuses to acknowledge what is becoming ever more obvious – that overpopulation of the Earth threatens everybody.

    Want to shut these extremists up? Ask any one of them how many abandoned and/or orphaned children live in their homes and you'll almost always get the same answer – NONE, BUT!

    Enough said!

    July 29, 2009 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  7. bill

    Let's see. They say the bill will "shortchange seniors and encourage abortions". Why don't we add encourage gays, encourage terrorists attacks, raise taxes, and ban the Bible.

    And maybe they can think of a few more reasons to oppose something that this country needs desperately.

    July 29, 2009 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  8. Jon, Pittsburgh, PA

    This is no surprise. Don't mention the good that Planned Parenthood does and the counseling they provide that attempts to persuade young women to NOT have abortions. Just play to people's emotions and do everything you can to stop progress.

    July 29, 2009 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  9. chelle

    So instead of just pushing to change the law, now the anti-abortionists want to take the choice away from low-income and under-employed women.

    Tell you what – let all the anti-abortionists start a fund to help pregnant women pay for education, health care, homes, and food for all these "unborn children"

    July 29, 2009 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  10. Tatianna

    The political left embracf a hatred of humanity long ago, and their insanities havent changed much no matter what ideological guise they wear at any given moment. It is their hatred of all that is human that defines them. They denounce waterboarding our enemies and say its against Americas morals and values. Yet they champion killing the unborn and elderly at taxpayers expense. May God save the USA from this kind of leadership putting the country on a very steep, very slippery slope.

    July 29, 2009 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  11. S Callahan

    curious thought....where is the conincidence with the Mad Scientist (pun) and this funding?
    It would be wise of the Governement to clearly spell out that funding is NOT to be used for the purposes of abortion but for the purposes of reducing, eliminatling abortion. It's time has come..look at the true history of abortion and it's intent...it had no moral basis other than to control racial, ethic, and status. If you really researched the issue you would surely oppose the issue of abortion....it's not really a 'woman's right'...becuase in the woman more woman have suffered not only physically but emotionally...it has drained their spritis..their hope.

    July 29, 2009 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  12. djb

    That couple looks very much like "Harry and Louise", don't they? And they look a little old to be worrying about an abortion, don't they? Oh, yeah, I get it...it's some other woman's health that may depend upon an abortion that they are "concerned" about.

    Just a question...does the health insurance that they have NOW pay for abortions?

    July 29, 2009 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  13. JD

    This is the reality of 0bamacare, people. First we are forced to pay for the murder of unborn innocents, then we are forced to comply with government euthanasia through the euphemistically-named "health care rationing."

    If there's anything that should be aborted, it is this TRILLION dollar boondoggle that does nothing apart from legitimizing state-sponsored medical murder.

    July 29, 2009 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  14. Kevin B

    The GOP and company are putting out so many out right lies to defeat ther health reform needed to avert future fiscal disaster

    GWB and company knew that if they left the nations finances in a shambles it would ham string any efforts to do the right thing by future administration for decades to come.

    This amounts to treason............

    July 29, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  15. Fla.

    More lies. There is nothing in the bill about abortion. The "Family" C Street cults sadly give real conservatives a bad name with their dishonesty.

    This right-wing propaganda is desperately stooping to the worst fear-mongering LIES threatening seniors when nothing could be further from the truth.

    This legislation would actually improve healthcare for all Americans if we don't get derailed by the "Family" circus. Unreal.

    July 29, 2009 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  16. Carmen, Miami FL

    This ad is disgusting and not just misleading but a flat out pile of lies.

    July 29, 2009 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  17. St. Louis Jake

    Nice try. Won't work. Real seniors (like my mother-in-law) worry more about a catastrophic illness wiping out their savings. I know for a fact that one of my mother’s friends had to sell his house to offset open heart surgery. He is too “rich” for Medicare, but his insurance refused to cover the cost of his problem.

    Big Pharma, the insurance companies and the fat-cats in the medical industry, along with the right-wing senators – who are all multi-millionaires – don’t give a rat’s behind about our crappy health care system. They aren’t going to get away with it this time. They can spent all they want on “scare tactic” ads – Nice try. Won’t work.

    July 29, 2009 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  18. chris

    What's the big deal about abortions? We send more troops to war every day – why not stop that first GOP?

    July 29, 2009 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  19. Deb

    This is just part of the disinformation campaign. Seniors will NOT lose covered services as part of the plan. Pass it and pass it soon. I do not want it re-hashed ad nausium during the 2010 campaigns.

    July 29, 2009 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  20. Grammarian

    Americans will fall for this, because they're naive. When it comes to paying for health care you disapprove . . . that happens with private insurance as well. If you pay premiums to XYZ Health Insurance Company . . . your premiums will end up paying for someone else's abortion . . . just like their premiums might end up paying for your bone fracture. Each of us pays for a wide variety of someone else's care. In that regard, private insurance and government insurance are the same. Get used to it. Deal with it.

    July 29, 2009 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  21. Right wing talking point

    The "Freedom Restriction Council" is nothing but a profit making lie machine for the RNC.

    July 29, 2009 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  22. Randolph Carter

    More stirring up of the fear in the hearts and minds of the ignorant republican base. Hey, It's worked for them in the past. Have a nice day!

    July 29, 2009 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  23. Lisa in FL

    Sick lies and GOP dirty politics...again. Just like the big lie that came out at the President's town hall yesterday. The government is going to "kill" the elderly...yes, literally. I don't know about the rest of you, but it is so obvious what the party of "no" are up to. They have known since the the primary season that if Obama wins, and if Obama's policies are inacted, they are screwed and out of power for years to come. Period. It is all lies, fear-mongoring and brainwashing. There are alot of sickos out there who would love nothing more to see our President defeated and quite frankly GONE. And I mean that in the worse case scenerio sense. God bless the Secret Service. They really have to provide top-notch security and due diligence to protect this President. And God Bless President Obama.

    July 29, 2009 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
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