For one thing, the Hyde Amendment is a rider that must be lobbied and attached each year to the annual Labor/Health and Human Services appropriations bill. Under its terms, the amendment applies only to those funds.
Rather than following the usual course of funding community health centers (CHCs) through the Labor/HHS budget, the health-care-reform measure does an end run around Hyde by directly appropriating billions of dollars into a new CHC fund.
Because the Obama administration’s “fix-it” bill did not include the abortion-ban language proposed by Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.), those billions appropriated to CHCs simply are not covered by Hyde.
Now, the president’s executive order purports to address this gap by extending the Hyde Amendment to these dollars as well. The problem is that, regardless of Obama’s stated intentions, he can’t actually do this without an act of Congress.