March 21st, 2010
06:19 PM ET

NOW 'incensed' over anti-abortion executive order

National Organization for Women President Terry O'Neill issued a statement Sunday afternoon slamming President Obama, saying that he had broken his faith with women by agreeing to issue an executive order that prohibits federal funding for abortions.

"The National Organization for Women is incensed that President Barack Obama agreed today to issue an executive order designed to appease a handful of anti-choice Democrats who have held up health care reform in an effort to restrict women's access to abortion. Through this order, the president has announced he will lend the weight of his office and the entire executive branch to the anti-abortion measures included in the Senate bill, which the House is now prepared to pass.

"President Obama campaigned as a pro-choice president, but his actions today suggest that his commitment to reproductive health care is shaky at best. Contrary to language in the draft of the executive order and repeated assertions in the news, the Hyde Amendment is not settled law - it is an illegitimate tack-on to an annual must-pass appropriations bill. NOW has a longstanding objection to Hyde and, in fact, was looking forward to working with this president and Congress to bring an end to these restrictions. We see now that we have our work cut out for us far beyond what we ever anticipated. The message we have received today is that it is acceptable to negotiate health care on the backs of women, and we couldn't disagree more."

soundoff (516 Responses)
  1. Bob

    Would NOW prefer not to have a health care bill? Consider the alternative. Then shut up.

    March 21, 2010 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Dennis Cooper

    I dont want a single penny, not a cent, going for the murder of innocent bacies, as they lie in the womb readying for life. Good for Obama, and GO LIFE.

    March 21, 2010 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse |
  3. mike

    If you want to have one pay for it your self. or start a non profit org who will give money to women who want one. there are ways around the order .. dont just yell for yelling sake.

    March 21, 2010 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse |
  4. NOW is right

    NOW is completely correct. With this order Obama has proven that he can not be trusted and will break any promise he makes to score points. He should not only be impeached but jailed for his blatant blackmailing of congressmen to vote for his way

    March 21, 2010 at 6:26 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Richard

    She does reallize that the EO only says that exsting law will be followed. The executive order does nothing to change any laws or rights of the US and its citizens. Although it is wood for the fire for our main stream media to get people fired up.

    March 21, 2010 at 6:27 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Donna Eddings

    Whether people like it or not, governing is about compromise if anything is ever going to get done.

    March 21, 2010 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Mini Carlsson

    If one steps back and takes a deep breath, this is a GOOD THING.
    What would O'Neill rather have? All or nothing?
    This is a big step forward and we need to realize it's not Obama, it's the conservative democrats. They are the ones that put this bill into compromising positions

    March 21, 2010 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
  8. David Volk

    I am pro-choice and support a women's right to choose an abortion up until the viability of the fetus and in cases of physical endangerment to her life following viability and prior to birth. I also understand NOW's frustration with the White House concession to pro-life Democrats in exchange for the first major health care reform bill in generations. However, I also recognize that abortion is an extremely divisive issue in America and a reasonable compromise is to keep abortion legal, but restrict the use of tax payer money to fund them. NOW should work to establish private funds to assist low income women who choose an abortion rather than fight the federal tax prohibition (Hyde amendment).

    March 21, 2010 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
  9. bravo

    as a woman, i'm glad this is the case. not so much because i'm anti abortion.....but well, look at it this way.

    a majority of people who will be opting in for public health care will be minorities or those who can't afford health care.

    this is the highest rate of teenage pregnancies.

    if the govt paid for abortions, then in effect they are limiting and slowing the growth of the population of these minorities.

    personally, i'm anti abortion because i believe all babies are innocent...more innocent than the mothers who carry them. Unless it's in the event of an emergency (mother's life in danger) i believe that all steps should be taken to protect this life. In the case of late term abortions where the mother's life is in danger, steps should be made to allow the child to live (ie deliver the child prematurely) and give the child a chance to live.

    NOW can cry all they want...but abortion is still a woman's choice. and if a woman chooses to have an abortion, she should pay for it.

    March 21, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
  10. TES37110

    As of 6:30 pm EST President Obama's Executive Order has upset Republicans, the National Conference of Catholic Bishops and NOW. Must be doing something right. Why? The test of real political leadership is when EVERYBODY is mad a you about something!

    March 21, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
  11. lasparky11

    I believe that every woman has a right to choose. However it not up to me or the rest of the tax payers of this country to pay for them.

    March 21, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Report abuse |
  12. WildBill

    Whatever. It's not like NOW will ever vote for someone other than a Democrat during any election....

    March 21, 2010 at 6:32 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Brandon Leeberg

    Waaaaah! Get over it! You people shouldn't be confusing the murder of unborn children with "reproductive healthcare"

    March 21, 2010 at 6:33 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Enuff

    People need to understand that nothing is perfect and what the President and congress have done is the first step towards a greater goal. Republican are against the President and now progressive are against him too? Come on, all Progressives must be standing by this President because the other side, will never do what he has done! Republicans are good at standing next to each other no matter what, why can't Progressives do that? Why are we so weak??

    This is a great day and America should be proud for this first step towards Health care for all!!!

    March 21, 2010 at 6:34 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Optimistic

    I am pro-choice and have no problem with this executive order. A woman still has the choice to have an abortion, she just can't use tax payer dollars to do so. What's the problem with that? (Real question, I don't see the problem here)

    March 21, 2010 at 6:34 pm | Report abuse |
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