Former Dem Rep. Who Voted for Obamacare Speaks Out Against HHS Mandate

by Alec Torres

A former Democratic representative who voted for Obamacare decried the Department of Health and Human Services mandate requiring coverage of contraception and drugs that may cause abortion, saying that during congressional debate on the law “we agreed to conscience protections.”

Former congressman Bart Stupak of Michigan, who left office in 2011 after deciding not to run for reelection, penned an op-ed in USA Today on Tuesday saying that while he still supports Obamacare, he thinks Americans “should not be required to relinquish our conscience and moral convictions in order to implement the Affordable Care Act.”

“We received an ironclad commitment [from the president] that our conscience would remain free and our principles would be honored,” Stupak wrote. “I had hoped that more of my Democratic colleagues would object to the way the contraception mandate has been applied.”

Stupak and Democrats for Life of America have filed a brief supporting Hobby Lobby and Conestoga against the mandate in the U.S. Supreme Court cases.

“The Affordable Care Act struck an important balance between improving health care options and respecting conscience, a moral conscience that no one can violate, not even the federal government through an HHS mandate,” Stupak writes. “I urge the Supreme Court to recognize and uphold this balance.”