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)

    I don't want my tax dollars going to foreign wars.
    "pro-lifers" where is your outrage? You let Bush take up to an unfounded war. You're ALL a bunch of lying hypocrites.

    March 22, 2010 at 5:45 am | Report abuse |
  2. Eleanor Fitzgerald

    Isn't it time we stopped running this country as though it were a theocracy? . There are too many poverty stricken women and children in this country with little hope for a better future. Sex is oversold in the media and entertainment industry to our often impressionable young people, especially young women craving love and popularity. We need to take more responsibility as a society, but that too would require spending more taxpayer's money. Hopefully, each state can take more responsibility for helping out desparate pregnant young women with whatever decision they make..

    March 22, 2010 at 5:45 am | Report abuse |
  3. tawnie

    It's my body, my choice, and what I discuss with my doctor is none of the country's business. If an accident happens such as failed birth control and failed condom I want the option to choose whether or not I am ready to have a lifetime commitment. If this could kill me I want the option to terminate.This is not an elective procedure and those of you comparing this to cosmetic surgery disgust me. No one should speak for every single woman in this country but no woman should be forced to have a child if they are not ready to, or do not choose to for any reason. You can list any excuse in the book but what it comes down to is a decision between a woman and her doctor. Women pay federal taxes and we should be allowed to have a medically needed proceedure if we choose to but it is our CHOICE. So get your religion, politics and attempted laws away from my body.

    March 22, 2010 at 5:50 am | Report abuse |
  4. Gerry

    I agree that Obama had to reaffirm, by signing this executive order, his obligation to uphold the law. In this case, the law prohibits federal funding for abortions, not abortions themselves. All these comments on not funding medical help for irresponsible women who went and got themselves pregnant should be considered in the light of the many, many diseases that will be covered despite their preventablity.

    How many of us are at risk of Type 2 diabetes and heart disease because of snacking in front of the TV on bags of processed foods with tons of sugar, hydrogenated oils, and high fructose corn syrup? If only those of us responsible enough to "deserve" health care should be able to get it, well . . . . Why apply a "deserving" standard only to women who get pregnant? And who don't, by the way, get that way all by themselves?

    March 22, 2010 at 5:51 am | Report abuse |
  5. Jerry

    It's not just that Federal funds couldn't be used to pay for abortions, it's that ANY insurer getting ANY Federal funds under this healthcare legislation would be prevented from even offering abortion coverage to those willing to pay the added expense from their own pockets.

    I'm not a huge fan of abortion in my own personal life but I don't believe I have any right to tell a woman she can't have one. I believe it's not a "baby" until it can survive outside of the womb without medical/mechanical assistance; until then it's just a "fetus". I do tend to believe that it makes more sense to spend a few hundred of my tax dollars aborting an unwanted fetus than to spend tens or hundreds of thousands of those tax dollars raising that unwanted child through 18+ years of welfare payments.

    As for a couple of comments here about abstinence, those people need to learn to be realistic. Sex is not illegal and it's fun (if I remember correctly). The only people who aren't going to have sex are the religious nuts and the ugly too poor to reach into their pockets and pull out $20 (I'm a poor atheist)!

    Get a grip and FIGHT YOUR PROGRAMMING!

    March 22, 2010 at 5:56 am | Report abuse |
  6. AlanSr

    Abortion is MURDER!
    This is the 1st thing that Osama has done right

    March 22, 2010 at 5:59 am | Report abuse |
  7. HT

    Overall, I agree with opinions posted by Jeff (15) and Jan (79) that abortion is a choice and it must be legal and safe. However, I think we must now consider that only those who can afford an abortion will be able to make that choice. Those without means will not have a choice without federal funding.

    March 22, 2010 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |
  8. SNK

    Not allowing federal funds to be used for abortions is NOT the same as switching to being "pro-life" or anti-abortion.

    Federal funds are stretched thinly enough and this was a reasonable compromise.

    I am pro-choice and pro-rights in nearly all cases. Roe v. Wade is landmark and is law. However, providing federal funds to carry out the freedoms it entails is not and should not be.

    March 22, 2010 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |
  9. Karen

    Abortion hurts women. Abortion is the mother taking the life of her own child. It is wrong, cruel and causes horrible psychological trauma. It is a sin against our God- thou shall not kill. It is a crime against humanity to deprive anyone, no matter how small their unalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
    I should not be required to support something that is completely against my strongest held beliefs with my tax dollars. It is wrong.

    March 22, 2010 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |
  10. Catie

    With modern science and the fact that human life begins so early it appauls me that any woman would be for killing life due to its inconvenience. Animals have more rights in this country than the unborn. Shame on those who dont protect the most innocent of society. I believe in reproductive rights, you see when I absolutely dont want to become pregnant I choose not to have sex. Dont give me the incest and rape arguement. I have been there. I was raped and became pregnant. I was told by planned parenthood that my abortion was like getting my wisdom teeth pulled. Guess what I had my wisdom teeth pulled but I am not still anquishing about it 30 years later. I have healed from the rape but not the abortion.

    March 22, 2010 at 6:06 am | Report abuse |
  11. B Drew

    I am pro-choice (female) but I feel NOW is out of line. As others have said...medical emergency is covered. That should be it. Anything else is elective and should be paid for out of pocket. Jeepers...

    March 22, 2010 at 6:06 am | Report abuse |
  12. My Life

    I am proud of NOW and NARAL for standing up. As a real conservative, I understand that intrusion into family life by any government is a loss of all of our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

    It does not matter what I think of abortion, I defend my countrywomen’s' rights to determine their own paths in life.

    The SCOTUS has said abortion is a woman's right so any intrusion into that right, including not funding it, like any other medical procedure, means that the views of a few are being hoisted upon the backs of those who seek to exercise that right.

    Not funding abortions is like telling mixed-race couples that some people object to their marriage on religious grounds and then making them pay an extra fee for their marriage licenses.

    If you claim to be conservative, you'd be pro-choice too.

    March 22, 2010 at 6:06 am | Report abuse |
  13. Amber

    I've always been pro-choice with the exception of late term abortions. That is definitely murder when you cannot deny that you have a FACE! I refuse to take responsibility for someone else's irresponsibility. Abstinence should be taught at home and in schools. Starting in 4th grade!!! How in the world do people of lesser economic circumstances ever expect to rise up out of poverty without putting an end to spitting out 3-4 kids by the age of 20? That culture needs to change. They need to see a better way and it does start with closing your legs and not being a ho. Harsh? Hell yes, and for their own good and self esteem.

    March 22, 2010 at 6:07 am | Report abuse |
  14. Catie

    Also, woman are still able to kill their unborn child. The tax payers are just not going to pay for it. How can you ask a pro lifer to pay for an abortion, that is sick

    March 22, 2010 at 6:08 am | Report abuse |
  15. Tom J

    My Tax dollars because you did not have the common sense not to get pregnant.
    HELL NO!!!

    March 22, 2010 at 6:09 am | Report abuse |
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