The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

The United States is dealing with a major jobs crisis, the EU is teetering on the verge of collapse, and Americans are so frustrated with the financial sector that they’re willing to protest outside for a month or more, but Congress is busy debating whether or not to limit women’s access to abortion.

On Thursday, the House of Representatives approved the Protect Life Act, or H.R. 358, which would change the new health care law to prohibit federal funding from going toward health plans that cover abortion services and would also prevent funding from being withheld from institutions that oppose abortions. The bill includes an exception for abortions performed because of rape, incest, or a grave risk to the mother’s health, but it nonetheless limits abortion access in other cases.

The House approved the rule for the Protect Life Act in a 248-173 vote, taking a step toward passing the bill and opening up hours of debate. The general debate that followed was essentially a series of politicians using the opportunity to discuss why they are pro-choice or pro-life, rather than why they support the specific act in question. Some representatives did discuss the implications of the bill — including that a pregnant woman could potentially be denied appropriate treatment if she needs an emergency abortion — but such considerations clearly could not sway obstinate pro-life politicians. The act passed 251-172, with the vast majority of Republicans voting in favor and the vast majority of Democrats opposing it, unsurprisingly.

Even though the bill passed the House, it has a negligible chance of passing the Senate, and President Obama has already threatened to veto the bill if it reaches the White House. Given this information, Congress is essentially wasting time discussing abortion instead of focusing on more pressing issues. If nothing else, however, the bill is a reminder of what is at stake during elections, since politicians tend to vote on party lines on the abortion issue.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi criticized the proposal, telling reporters before the vote Thursday, “Under this bill, when the Republicans vote for this bill today, they will be voting to say that women can die on the floor of health care providers. … It’s just appalling. I can’t even describe to you the logic of what they are doing today.”

Of course, not understanding the logic of the House GOP is a common theme this session.

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the MAGA movement and far-right Christian fundamentalists have downplayed its severity — inspiring critics to slam MAGA as a suicidal "death cult." Christian fundamentalist Joy Pullmann, in a shocking op-ed published by the far-right website The Federalist on the day of Gen. Colin Powell's death, argues that Christians should welcome death from COVID-19, like any other cause of death, as "a good thing." And she attacks the "pagan assumptions" of those who argue in favor of widespread vaccination.

"For Christians, death is good," Pullmann writes. "Yes, death is also an evil — its existence is a result of sin. But thanks be to God, Jesus Christ has redeemed even death. In his resurrection, Christ has transformed death into a portal to eternal life for Christians…. The Christian faith makes it very clear that death, while sad to those left behind and a tragic consequence of human sin, is now good for all who believe in Christ."

Keep reading... Show less

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Don Winslow, the author of several New York Times bestsellers, blasted Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) in a newly-released video shared on social media.

For months now, Manchin has positioned himself as one of the main roadblocks of President Joe Biden's proposed Build Back Better agenda, pushing back on key provisions including child tax credits and climate initiatives.

Keep reading... Show less
x
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}