Americans split on abortion coverage

Jan. 14, 2010 at 10:22 PM
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SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 14 (UPI) -- Americans are almost evenly split on whether abortion should be covered by any health plan receiving federal subsidies, a survey indicated.

The Angus Reid Public Opinion national survey, released Thursday, found 44 percent of Americans support a ban on abortion being paid for by health plans getting federal subsidies, compared with 42 percent who oppose such a ban. The survey found 14 percent were unsure.

The Senate healthcare bill would require federal funds to cover abortions. The House version would ban use of federal funds for elective abortions.

Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Mich., has threatened to vote against the healthcare bill unless it restricts federal funding for abortions. His amendment to the House measure would restrict support to insurance plans covering abortions.

Stupak says he and other Democrats would vote against the healthcare bill if it contained language similar to that of the Senate bill, The Hill reported.

In the survey, half of the respondents said there's no point in reopening the debate on the legality of abortion, while 35 percent say such a debate is overdue.

Three in 10 Americans said they favor abortion only in cases of rape, incest or to save a woman's life, while 19 percent say abortion should be unrestricted, the survey said.

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