Monday, September 14, 2009

Partly fueling the debate is that President Barack Obama has said he wants the insurance expansion to cover "reproductive" services, Hanks said.

Just when Coloradans thought health-reform talk couldn't get any more heated, long-running arguments over abortion funding threaten to take the health debate into the thermonuclear.

The National Right to Life Committee has gone "Condition Red" on its Web page, while NARAL Pro-Choice America begs, "Help Us Stop the Lies!"

"There's nothing that gets people angrier than abortion," said Emilie Ailts, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado.

"The health care thing is raising awareness like nothing I've ever seen. It has a life of its own," said Leslie Hanks of Colorado Right to Life. "I think it's truly the abortion issue that's one of the major concerns. It does motivate a great number of people."

In sharp dispute is whether insurance-reform proposals brewing in Congress would breach a longtime block on federal funding for abortion services that has served as a partial political truce on the volatile issue.

Abortion opponents say one of the primary bills creating a "public option," or government-run insurance plan, allows the plan's designers to cover all abortions.

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