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This Is The Most Important Abortion Debate In Congress In 30 Years, So Where’s Bart Stupak? Where Are The Bishops? He and They Should Be On Every Cable Show.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

The Washington Post has an extensive report of the deal that Nebraska’s Ben Nelson accepted to allow federal funding of abortion for the first time.

Thus is launched the most important Congressional debate on abortion in three decades. Every pro-life voter in the land should use the “Take Further Action” button in the Free Our Health Care banner in the column to the right to communicate with your senators and Representative to oppose Obamacare, especially because of this abortion deal which will result in your tax dollars paying for hundreds of thousands of abortions. Even some supporters of abortion rights will work to reverse this wholesale sundering of the truce that has governed Congress since Roe came down.

Every Catholic bishop should direct every Catholic priest to preach from every Catholic pulpit this weekend and next on the urgent need and indeed duty to communicate with Congressmen especially on the need to oppose federal funding of abortion and to support the Stupak amendment. A legislative decision is pending that will not be easily reversed for decades to come if it passes. Every effort should be made –if the Bishops really mean what they say they mean. Indeed, every Bishop ought to be booking a flight to D.C. to see their own Representatives and senators. Would the key handful of Catholic Democrats be more likely to stand firm if they saw scores of Bishops and Cardinals walking the halls of Rayburn? Do the unborn deserve such a show of resolve from the Bishops, as disruptive as it would no doubt be to their calendars?

If anyone needs to get smart generally, a very useful archive of stories on all that is wrong with Obamacare is here in the Wall Street Journal’s Guide to Obamacare. Read this set of reports and you won’t be lacking for ammunition at Christmas dinner when a relative declares the Senate has accomplished a historic thing. In fact, run a few off and have them handy.

But the abortion issue is narrow andself-contained: Will the Congress use Obamacare to win the last big battle for abortion rights absolutists by funneling federal money into the abortion business? The Senate bill will allow them to do that, by the hundreds of millions. Democratic Congressman Bart Stupak is the man of the moment, with the ability to force the repeal of the Senate’s sell-out on abortion funding. The Catholic Bishops have rejected the Senate deal, and Stupak has already blasted the Senate language. Over at First Thoughts blog, Steven Dillard sums up the hope of pro-life people:

[T]he only thing standing in the way of federal funding of abortions is Rep. Stupak and his leadership on this issue. And the question on every politico’s mind is: Will Stupak cave like Nelson? Many of my jaded Republican friends think Pelosi et al.will get to Stupak, and force him to sign off on language similar to that in the Senate bill.

Well, call me a cock-eyed optimist, but I truly believe Stupak will stand his ground. Like the late (and great) Robert P. Casey, Sr., I am convinced that Stupak is the genuine article. Consider, for example, the following comments by Stupak:

“I don’t think the party leadership expected this. They really did not think we would make such a big issue out of it. And they were wrong . . . . We are going to hold firm and make sure the Stupak-Pitts language stays when this legislation comes back to us. We will not vote for this bill if that language is not there . . . . We’ll have a conversation if it comes back that way. Not a negotiation; a conversation.”

Now, while I could certainly be proven wrong, I think Rep. Stupak means what he says, and will do everything in his power to prevent federal funding of abortion in the final version of health-care reform bill. And if he does, Stupak will become a hero to those of us in the pro-life movement. He will also empower and encourage other pro-life Democrats to follow his lead, and strengthen the pro-life coalition within his party. Most importantly, Stupak’s stance will serve as a very public testimony to the inherent dignity of every unborn child, and undoubtedly save lives.

Do your part to support Stupak and his allies by calling his office via the Hill Switchboard –202-224-3121. And add to the political pressure on other House Democrats by contributing to the fund established by the National Republican Congressional Committee. That fund targets 24 House Democrats who come from swing districts but who voted for Obamacare last round. We need to peel off three of them to defeat Obamacare this time, and a rising total in the fund focuses their attention like nothing else.

It would be great if every pro-life activist in the country contributed $10, $25, $50 or even $100 to It would be the most effective pro-life contribution you have made in years.

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Last Minute Christmas Shopping Via Amazon

Monday, December 21, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

Three ideas for your last minute gift buying, as heard on today’s show:

Michael Medved’s The 5 Big Lies About American Business,

The 5 Big Lies About American Business: Combating Smears Against the Free-Market Economy

From America’s finest sports writer, Terry Pluto, and his co-author, also from the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Brian Windhorst, comes LeBron James: The Making of an MVP

Lebron James: The Making of an MVP

And for the mystery lover, try the first in the Joe Pickett series from C.J. Box, Open Season:

Open Season (A Joe Pickett Novel)

“Trial Lawyers Buy Democrats In Congress”

Monday, December 21, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

The lead editorial in the Washington Examiner should charts the pernicious grip that plaintiffs’ lawyers have on Congress.

This is a money machine for Democrats, and all the many victims of the 2009 flood of terrible legislation have got to realize that to counter this syndicate of special interest lawyers in November, 2010, an enormous effort to fund and support Republican challengers will be necessary, beginning now.

That is part of whatI wrote about in my column today, and another reason to visit and contribute to (Give someone an envelope with a note that you gave $25 to in their name, and encouraging them to visit and get involved in the campaign against of the 24 targeted Democrats.)

“The March of the Senate Democrats”

Monday, December 21, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

The Monday morning column from Clark Judge:

The March of the Senate Democrats
By Clark S. Judge, managing director, White House Writers Group, Inc.

As one early morning report puts it, the Senate is now “marching” to passage on Christmas Eve of its version of health overhaul. Three motions preliminary to a cloture vote have passed 60-40, all Democrats for, all Republicans against. What does this Democrats-only bill do? What are the consequences?

As it stands today, the health overhaul bill is a hoax. We all may know some part of the litany, but it is worth keeping in mind just how many forms this hoax takes.

The administration promised overhaul would come with not a penny of new taxes for Americans earning under $250,000 a year, later lowering that to $200,000 for individuals. Estimates now hold that 25 percent of Americans earning under $200,000 will see their taxes go up. ( <> )

The administration has said repeatedly that if you like your current plan the health overhaul will let you keep it. But the bill includes numerous definitions of care that will act as Federal mandates layered on top of the state mandates that have done so much to drive up health insurance costs. Insurance plans that don’t comply will have to change or close down. Those that change will be the New Coke of health care. Same label. Different formula. Different taste. Current plans in name only.

The administration insists that the bill will lower the deficit over the next decade. That’s because tax increases will kick in early, benefits much later (see <> ). But after the government’s planning horizon has expired, the bill will take spending as a proportion of national income permanently beyond the levels reached only in a single year in our history to date-the peak year of spending in World War Two. This will mean not just higher deficits but a fundamental altering of the American economy, with the U.S. embracing the economics of Europe.

Yet among the bill’s assumptions is that Congress will cut Medicare reimbursement of doctors. Already cuts and slow payments have led to doctors opting out of Medicare in rising numbers. Is Congress really prepared to impose and stick by cost containment that hollows out the program? If not, even within this decade the Senate’s deficit projections will prove a hoax.

And with Nebraska now receiving Medicaid cost relief apparently in perpetuity and Louisiana getting something similar, how long will it be before every senator will demand federal absorption of these state budget busters? And what will that do to the federal deficit?

History points where we are going. As Sally Pipes (one of the nation’s most astute economists analyzing the health overhaul and president of Pacific Research Institute, which I chair) has noted, in the mid-60s when Medicare was passed “it was projected to cost $12 billion in 1990. Well in fact it cost $107 billion. Last year it cost $427 billion; it’s estimated in 2017 to cost $884 billion.” Today Medicare carries a $73.4 trillion unfunded liability-a national debt six times as large as our official nation debt.

If Senate Democrats do not know what this means, they should talk to the People’s Bank of China. ( ) reports that on Friday the bank’s deputy governor “told an academic audience that… [t]he United States cannot force foreign governments to increase their holdings of Treasuries. Double the holdings? It is definitely impossible.”

Senate Democrats clearly do not understand or perhaps even care about nation’s finances. They are under tremendous, even unprecedented, pressure from the White House and special interests like the thuggish Service Employees International Union. The only numbers left to move them come from the polls.

Here is where the issue stands today, then. If Democratic senators up for reelection see their numbers tank between now and Christmas Eve, one or two may say no. Which senators? The most likely are those from centrist states: Indiana’s Evan Bayh, North Dakota’s Byron Dorgan, and Arkansas’ Blanche Lincoln. But unless polls make overwhelmingly clear that voters understand the hoax, abhor it, and will remember it on election day eleven months hence, the march of the Senate Democrats will continue, health overhaul will pass the Senate on Christmas Eve, and in all likelihood will pass the Congress in January or early February. Wooden soldiers on parade.

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