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House passes sweeping GOP anti-abortion bill

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WASHINGTON – The House voted 251-175 on Wednesday to pass the GOP’s controversial anti-abortion measure H.R. 3, “The No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act.” Sixteen Democrats joined 235 Republicans in approving it.

It now goes to the Senate, where it’s all but certain to perish. The White House has threatened to veto it.

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The legislation would eliminate tax deductions for employer-provided health insurance plans that cover abortion, effectively raising costs for businesses that offer abortion-inclusive health care to employees. It could also deny Medicaid-based abortion care to women even if their health may be harmed by carrying the pregnancy to term.

“This bill just simply helps codify what has de facto been our policy for 35 years through the Hyde amendment, and that is a policy that in no way shape or form outlaws abortion,” said Republican Conference Chairman Jeb Hansarling (R-TX).

Democrats said it would harm small business and further restrict the private medical decisions of women.

“This bill goes far beyond prohibiting federal funding [for abortion],” said Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY). “The real purpose and effect of this bill is to eliminate private health care choices for women by imposing significant tax penalties on families and small businesses when they use their own money to pay for health insurance or medical care.

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The measure maintains exemptions for cases of rape, incest and when the mother’s life is in danger. But a committee report left open the possibility that the legislation could deny federally-subsidized abortion in instances of statutory rape.

Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) called it “common sense bipartisan legislation” that reflected “the will of the American people and ought to be the law of the land.”

Abortion-rights groups were livid and promised a backlash.

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“This bill is so extreme that it manipulates the tax code to advance anti-choice policies and could spur the IRS to audit rape and incest survivors who choose abortion care,” said Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America. “Members of Congress who supported this egregious assault on women will hear from outraged Americans through phone calls, protests, petitions, and most importantly, at the ballot box in 2012.”

Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood, said she was “outraged” that the measure passed. “H.R. 3 is a dangerous bill that goes far beyond any other proposal ever introduced in Congress to take comprehensive health care coverage away from women,” she said.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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El Paso hospital forced to call out Trump’s lie that surgeons left the operating room to see him

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President Donald Trump bragged that he got an overwhelming welcome from Ohio and Texas when he went to visit survivors of the mass shootings before his latest vacation. Now, however, El Paso's University Medical Center is being forced to dispute the president's account of events.

"Not only did they meet with me, they were pouring out of the room. The doctors were coming out of the operating rooms. There were hundreds and hundreds of people all over the floor. You couldn’t even walk on it. So, you know, there’s a lot to happen," Trump told reporters on the White House lawn Wednesday.

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Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Fox News ripped to shreds by media analyst for running state-news network briefing for Trump

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Washington Post media critic Erik Wemple unleashed hellfire on former press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Fox News for hiring her to deliver the White House spin for the president on their air.

Fox News, which has only modest actual news reporting outside of its opinion arm, but that's no reason to hire a liar to the network, he explained.

He cited the greatest hits from the Huckabee-Sanders show that happened less and less frequently from the White House podium. He included everything from the time she doctored a video of CNN's Jim Acosta to accuse him of assaulting a White House intern to her accusation of "fake news" to every question she didn't like.

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Brutal new recession indicator: Manufacturing sector contracts for the first time in a decade

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Warning signs keep piling up that the American economy is slowing down, if not headed for an outright recession.

CNBC reports that IHS Markit's U.S. manufacturing purchasing managers index this month contracted for the first time since September 2009.

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