Greer defends threat of “forced, taxpayer-funded abortions”by Dara Kam | August 12th, 2009
RPOF Chairman Jim Greer stood by his assertion that President Barack Obama’s health care reforms could lead to “forced, taxpayer-funded abortions.”
Greer held a roundtable with reporters at GOP headquarters this morning, covering a range of issues including the hijinks at town hall meetings throughout the country, including one in Tampa that erupted in physical violence.
Opponents of Obama’s health care package claim that the changes would create “death panels” that would pull the plug on Grandma to save government spending.
“I don’t like the term death panels,” Greer said.
But, he added, “I do believe that trying to pass legislation such as this will provide opportunity for certain types of medical procedures that in some cases Americans would not be aware of or in most cases Americans would not want taxpayer funds to help facilitate.”
The chairman was apparently referring to abortions. Greer yesterday circulated a memo questioning the health care bill and whether it would “work to systematically ‘increase birth intervals between pregnancies,’ opening the very real probability of forced, tax-payer funded abortions.”
He stood by his characterization of the bill this morning.
“If the procedure is financed by taxpayer funds, then in fact the word forced or mandated would be appropriate,” Greer said.
The portion of the bill Greer refers to deals with home visitation services.
The full text follows:
“The term ‘nurse home visitation services’ means home visits by trained nurses to families with a first-time pregnant woman, or a child (under 2 years of age), who is eligible for medical assistance under this title, but only, to the extent determined by the Secretary based upon evidence, that such services are effective in one or more of the following:
(1) Improving maternal or child health and pregnancy outcomes or increasing birth intervals between pregnancies.”
Greer decried the outbursts at town hall meetings but blamed Democrats for spinning the events and not being able to answer questions about the health care bill.
“I think it’s outrageous that people are screaming at members of Congress…but I also think that members of Congress have an obligation to provide the information.
But what’s actually happened is the members of Congress can’t answer the questions,” Greer said.
“What you see happening is a political effort to influence the appearance of the outcome of these town hall meetings,” he said. “They’re trying to go into these town hall meetings and do in some cases the best they can and in other cases just try to give the appearance of deliberation on the issue. But they can’t answer the questions so what happens is the audience becomes frustrated and angry.”
Greer went on: “There is no place for yelling and screaming and violence and pushing. And there should be no place for hidden agendas to try and give an impression either to the audience or to the media of what’s transpiring there.”