Why I did it

Once it was clear that the House leadership would eventually obtain the 216 votes necessary to pass health-care reform, I was left with a choice: vote against the bill and watch it become law with no further protections for life or reach an agreement that prevents federal funding for abortions.

Therefore, I and other pro-life Democrats struck an agreement with President Obama to issue an executive order that would ensure all Hyde Amendment protections would apply to the health-care reform bill. No, an executive order is not as strong as the statutory language we fought for at the start. We received, however, an “ironclad” commitment from the president that no taxpayer dollars will be used to pay for abortions.