Democratic Leaders Say Stupak Not On Board Yet

Posted March 21, 2010 at 12:46pm

Despite reports to the contrary, House Democratic leaders insisted Sunday that they do not yet have the support of anti-abortion-rights Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.), who has been leading a bloc of key holdouts on the bill.

MSNBC reported earlier that Stupak — and others opposing the final health bill over the abortion language — would vote in favor. But according to Brendan Daly, spokesman for Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), “MSNBC is wrong.”

“We hope so, but it hasn’t happened yet,” he added.

Meanwhile, Rep. Brian Baird (D-Wash.) released a statement saying he would vote in favor of the measure as well. Baird, who voted “no” when the bill first came to the House floor last November, cited improvements to Medicare and prescription drug coverage.

“The legislation before us is not perfect, but it does make substantial improvements on what exists today and it contains many improvements over the bill that passed the House of Representatives in 2009,” he said in the statement. “Weighing the concerns against the benefits of the legislation, and considering that the status quo is unsustainable, I will vote for this legislation.”