CHARLOTTE, September 5, 2012, ( – Although he made a critical compromise to secure the passage of ObamaCare in 2009, Bart Stupak now says the implementation of the law he voted for is not merely wrong but “illegal.”

“Not only does that HHS mandate violate the executive order, it also violates statutory law,” the former Michigan congressman said at a Democrats for Life of America panel discussion entitled, “Can you be pro-life in a pro-choice party?”


“I think it’s illegal,” he said. “I believe it has contraceptive services, it also has drugs that induce [abortion]…abortifacient drugs.”

Such funding, he stated, was illegal under the Omnibus Budget Act of 2009, “passed by the Democratic House, the Democratic Senate and signed by President Obama. That is probably the most specific particular language that no funds can be used to promote abortion, or words along those lines.”

However, critics say Stupak – who voted for the Affordable Care Act despite his concerns – should not be surprised by the way it has been implemented.

Douglas Johnson, the legislative director at the National Right to Life Committee, told earlier this year “is based on language in the ObamaCare law itself.”

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Stupak confessed to being “perplexed and disappointed, having negotiated the executive order with the president” that was supposed to prevent the outrages Stupak now sees at work. However, observers at the time said the executive order was insufficient to undo the harms the law would inflict upon the unborn.

Stupak, who retired from Congress after voting for ObamaCare, saw his House seat go to pro-life Republican physician Dan Benishek

Earlier this year he and Democrats for Life of America (DFLA) executive director Kristen Day submitted comments opposing the current incarnation of the HHS mandate, saying that abortion-inducing medications such as Plan B and Ella should “be excluded from the employer mandate, or at least that individuals and organizations, including commercial businesses, with sincere religious objections” be exempted from distributing such drugs. 

Despite their objections to their party’s nominee, their party’s platform, and the dominant theme of the Democratic Party convention to date, the four Democrats for Life board members present at the event said the real threat to the unborn came not from the Democrats’ support for taxpayer-funded abortion for all nine months but from the GOP’s economic philosophy.

Former Pennsylvania Congresswoman Kathy Dahlkemper joined Catholic University political science professor Stephen F. Schneck and University of St. Thomas law professor Thomas Berg at the forum.

Schenck said the Republican Party “is driven by an anti-government, Tea Party-inspired mindset that is ill suited for pro-life goals.”

However, a 2010 poll conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute found that 63 percent of self-described Tea Party members believed abortion should be illegal in all or most circumstances.

Dahlkemper said Republicans “claim to be pro-life yet lack commitment to social justice issues.” Schenck said if Medicaid is reduced, the abortion rate will increase by six to eight percent

“The Democratic Party used to have more pro-life members than the GOP,” Schneck said. “Sadly, the Republican Party will never support the programs for social and economic justice that are the foundation for pro-life America.”   

Democrats for Life enthusiastically supported the health care bill and filed a lawsuit against the Susan B. Anthony List for holding a differing view.