House Democrats are hoping to vote on their version of the health care bill by the end of the week. But some members of the party could derail the process in a battle over taxpayer funding of abortion.
Rep. Bart Stupak, D - Mich., heads a group of 39 pro-life Democrats. The group says unless House Speaker Nancy Pelosi allows a clear up-and-down vote on the question of taxpayer funding of abortion, they will not support the health care reform bill.
"The courts have always ruled if Congress does not explicitly state 'no public funding for abortion,' then abortion is included as a covered benefit and therefore we need language that specifically states no public funding for abortion," Stupak said.
The Washington Post reports House leaders were still negotiating with the bloc of concerned Democrats Monday, but they had not reached an agreement.
Their support is crucial because no Republicans are supporting the bill and the Democrats need a broad majority for it to pass.