March 22nd, 2010
02:10 PM ET
12 years ago

Stupak award rescinded

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="In a press conference Sunday, Rep. Bart Stupak explained his decision to reach a deal with President Obama that involves Obama issuing an executive order about abortion funding."]
Washington (CNN) – An anti-abortion rights organization is withdrawing an award it planned to present Rep. Bart Stupak, after the Michigan Democrat announced Sunday he would support health care reform legislation.

The Susan B. Anthony List had chosen Stupak to receive the “Defender of Life” award at the “Campaign for Life Gala” Wednesday here in the nation’s capital. Stupak and several Democrats said that they would vote for the health care bill after President Obama assured them that no federal funding would be allowed to pay for abortion. Obama released an executive order that emphasized abortions would not be paid for with federal dollars.

“By accepting this deal from the most pro-abortion President in American history, Stupak has not only failed to stand strong for unborn children, but also for his constituents and pro-life voters across the country,” Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, said in a statement shortly before the House was set to vote on the controversial bill.

Dannenfelser charged that the executive order was not enough.

"The executive order on abortion funding does absolutely nothing to fix the problems presented by the health care reform bill that the House will vote on this evening,” she said. “The very idea should offend all pro-life Members of Congress. An executive order can be rescinded at any time at the President's whim, and the courts could and have a history of trumping executive orders. Most importantly, pro-abortion Representatives have admitted the executive order is meaningless."

Updated: 11:28 p.m.: Rep. Stupak spoke with CNN Sunday night about the decision of the Susan B. Anthony List. "I didn't seek the award," Stupak told CNN, "I stood on my principle. I don't need an award."

–CNN Producer Lesa Jansen contributed to this report.

Filed under: Abortion • Bart Stupak • Health care • President Obama
soundoff (327 Responses)
  1. Tom Burtnett

    My question to members of this organization. How many of your membership have an adopted child in their family? If you feel so strongly against abortion then step up to the plate and give these children a home. I would guess the percentage is very low. At the end of the day, I believe this should be left to the woman who is pregnant and it is her private, personal decision and all of us should stay out of it. This is the same scenario that we see from the extreme right Christian groups. They believe everyone should be forced to their beliefs. Stay out of the woman's business!

    March 22, 2010 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  2. Navy Vet

    Stupak did stand strong to protect unborn children., He held out until he was positive that the Hyde amendment would be followed.

    And now ALL unborn children will receive healthcare so they don't die in utero like my son.

    What is it with you, all you care about is preventing abortions. What about preventing still births, deaths in utero, birth defects.

    If you truly cared about unborn children you would care that all mothers get prenatal care.

    Now they will.

    March 22, 2010 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  3. jeff jackson, alabama

    The fact is that an executive order CAN BE RESCINDED
    at any time.
    And don't forget when you are dealing with Obama
    you are dealing with a product of the old time
    Chicago political machine.

    March 22, 2010 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  4. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert but...

    Excuse me, isn't abortion a legal (for now) medical procedure? What's next, no federal money for tonsil removal? Stupid bible-thumping hicks. Have a nice day!

    March 22, 2010 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  5. John in Tampa

    Healthcare was about healthcare, not abortion. It was correct to not get them tangled;Obama did what he should have, he declared there was no intention to change abortion policy either way. Thus leaving that for another day.

    People who condemn Stupak now obviously wanted to tangle abortion and change policy now. Too bad. Now deal with it as the single important issue that it is, on its own merits.

    March 22, 2010 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  6. Doug,lib jersey

    To be a Democrat today you can't have a single shred of integrity, decency, or morals. Democrats do not care what a majority of this nation wants, 80% of the decent, hard working, honest, law abiding Americans who make this country as great as it is are against this socialist take over, but the Democrats don't care, they want everyone in this country to become their entitlement slaves.

    March 22, 2010 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  7. Don - Pittsburgh


    Our society is out of control. This article is another example. Mr. Stupak determined that no federal money is going to be used as a result of the health care legislation. He voted for something that is ultimately going to save lives. Is this anti-abortion rights group only concerned with the lives of the unborn? Were they as outraged when we went to a war that was unnecessary, costing thousands of U.S. lives as well as foreign lives? Were they asking where the funding was coming from when we were going to blow things up when we went to Iraq, the first war in history that didn't result in a tax increase to the American people?

    We have lost all sense of decorum and responsibility when we are in a shared spaces. Our self interest has become the parmount concern no matter where we are at or what we are doing. To shout out any remarks, favorable or unfavorable in a chamber of Congress is not right. Have we gotten to a point where we say to ourselves, "if it's not illegal, I can do it?" Have the consequences of doing right or wrong in our litigious society boiled down to,"if they can't arrest me for doing it, than it's O.K.?"

    This kind of behavior is the result of a culture that is far more dependent on sensationalism and illusion than on reality. People are learning from examples. The big banks, the insurance industry, auto manufacturers, Wall Street. If they do wrong, they get bailed out and no one is held accountable. That kind of irresponsibility has become contagious and people are learning that if it's technically not illegal, then it's OK. Nevermind if it just isn't right!

    Go ahead, keep walking down this path of gradual and insideous degradation of values, morals, and ideals. If you didn't hear the phone during the wake up call of 911, the next wake up call is really going to surprise you.

    March 22, 2010 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  8. LC in CA

    Can't see de forest for de tree, cause all day can see is de knot 'ole in de trunk. Fixated on de knot .ole, if you know wat i mean.

    March 22, 2010 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  9. Walter L Johnson

    I have nothing but contempt for those in my own Church who place one isssue in the right to life, abortion, above all other aspects of life. These individuals are happy to have babies born into squalid conditions in places like the slums of India or the campos of Southern Texas, while I care more that the living be giving a chance to keep on living by having access to health care.

    It is not that I would not prefer to see both no abortions and universal medical care, but in the real world I believe we have to live within the context of multi-religious value, and the evidence that a fetus has a sould before the quickening is just not compelling to me. 80% of fertilized eggs are naturally aborted and show up as either still births, miscarriages, or heavy periods, and I don't believe heaven is occupied primarily by those never born.

    I feel a far greater obligation to my fellow living beings who I know were born and should be given a chance to stay alive and not die simply because their parents can'f afford medical care, which is an accident of birth itself. A child cannot be blamed for who its parents are.

    March 22, 2010 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  10. titus, Lawrencevile, Ga

    Stupak, I am proud of you for showing courage and doing what will help poor Americans who need help most. You have also shown support for pro-life group.
    Be rest assured that greater award await you!

    March 22, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  11. rkuipers

    Plain & simple. Stupak sold out to a proven liar.

    March 22, 2010 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  12. Wisconsonite - Stop Smoking the Tea Bags!

    It's laughable that this organization would have something called the “Campaign for Life Gala” and be giving a “Defender of Life” award when they absolutely do not give a fig about the lives of working class Americans! ALL they care about are the "lives" of the UN-born . . . what a joke!

    March 22, 2010 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  13. Nick , California

    How about standing up for people that already exist and are breathing!!???

    March 22, 2010 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  14. k.j. bricker

    Changing from mild Democrat to ticked-off Republican! What's next, Mr. Obama? Don't think I can take care of myself so you gonna pick out what groceries I'm allowed to eat? How about identity theft, Mr. Obama? Gonna do away with the cash system & give us all a microchip under our skin? We already have the scanners everywhere. We gonna have our own little bar code so no one can impersonate us? Oh, yeah, Mr. Obama, you taking us on a great big sled ride on a great big slippery slope straight to Hell. I have seen you Mr. Obama, and I know who you are. You are the great Liar. The greatest we've seen yet. And you are going to destroy us.

    March 22, 2010 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  15. frostro

    Stupak showed true colors, caved in instead of standing firm with dignity.

    March 22, 2010 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  16. michael

    Chicago politics wins again

    March 22, 2010 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  17. sharon

    you tell them Rep. Stupak.

    March 22, 2010 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  18. Four and The Door

    Stupak caved under pressure. It goes a long way towards showing his strength of character and conviction to ideals. What a let down for all Americans.

    March 22, 2010 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  19. Dad of a Diabetic

    Thank you Mr. Stupak. Yesterday, March 21,2010, my child woke up as an uninsurable reject to the health insurance companies. This morning, March 22, 2010, my child woke up as an ordinary person when it comes to getting health insurance. For hundreds of thousands of children with deadly diseases, their diseases just became a little less of a burden. Many will no longer die a premature death, because they could not get health insurance. The Republicans did a great job for more than 10 years keeping children with deadly diseases uninsurable. Actions speak louder than words. Republican words about pre-existing conditions are just words. God bless you Mr. Stupak.

    March 22, 2010 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  20. Mike in SA

    Stupak told CNN, "...I don't need an award."

    Correct, Mr. Stupak. What you need is some character and conviction.

    March 22, 2010 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  21. sensible Cape Coral FL

    I admire Susan B. Anthony. She must be turning over in her grave at what is being done in her name. She stood for women's rights. Stupid Stupak has had his moment in the spotlight – so STOP already!

    March 22, 2010 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  22. k.j. bricker

    That red, white & blue thing I had flying on my porch is eating dirt. Took it down, threw it down, and it's staying down. Sick to death of this top-heavy, out-of-control government finding excuses to get into every aspect of our lives – and forcing us to comply under threat of fines or worse.

    March 22, 2010 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  23. Grahame Rhodes

    Oooooo. What a disappointment. No award........ Deary Me what is he going to put on his mantle shelf over the fireplace.

    March 22, 2010 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  24. ken

    What a sellout. Bart Stupak has lost all respect, and his Congressional seat in November.

    March 22, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  25. Robert

    No loss, they should keep there nose out of others peoples business anyway.

    March 22, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14