The Obama administration's actions to respond to the outbreak of swine flu, including its declaration of a public health emergency, smacks of an attempt to cover up this week's Senate vote on the confirmation of Kansas Gov. Kathleen SebeliusKathleen SebeliusThe Hill's Coronavirus Report: Mike Roman says 3M on track to deliver 2 billion respirators globally and 1 billion in US by end of year; US, Pfizer agree to 100M doses of COVID-19 vaccine that will be free to Americans The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Former HHS Secretary Sebelius gives Trump administration a D in handling pandemic; Oxford, AstraZeneca report positive dual immunity results from early vaccine trial Coronavirus Report: The Hill's Steve Clemons interviews Kathleen Sebelius MORE (D) as secretary of Health and Human Services, a prominent anti-abortion-rights activist told the Washington Independent.

"Some people think that declaring a state of emergency about the flu was a political thing to push the Sebelius nomination through," Concerned Women for America President Wendy Wright told the website's Dave Weigel.

Wright's group and a slew of other abortion activists have pushed hard against Sebelius, an old foe from numerous abortion fights in Kansas. Campaigning by anti-abortion-rights groups succeeded in ginning up Senate Republican opposition to Sebelius, though her confirmation as the final member of President Obama's Cabinet seems all but assured.

The Senate will begin debate on Sebelius Tuesday morning.

UPDATE: Look likes like the swine-flu-response-equals-cover-up-for-Sebelius meme is working quickly through the right wing. Family Research Council President Tony Perkins weighed in via an e-mail sent to supporters Monday. "[L]iberals are already scheming how they can use the health scare to win the confirmation of pro-abortion extremist Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D-Kans.) as Secretary of Health and Human Services," he writes

Just who are these liberals who confide the truth about their secret conspiracies to prominent national conservative leaders? Perkins leaves us hanging on that one.

Here's the full text of Perkins's statement:
Sebelius: The Real Public Health Scare

What do sick pigs have to do with widespread, taxpayer-funded abortion? More than you might think. This week, as panic spreads over a potential swine flu pandemic, liberals are already scheming how they can use the health scare to win the confirmation of pro-abortion extremist Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D-Kans.) as Secretary of Health and Human Services. No doubt the empty seat at HHS was keenly felt this weekend, as Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security, stepped into the void at HHS and declared the swine flu a "health emergency." Although the Senate leadership will use the urgency of the flu to try to force Sebelius through the chamber, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said the government's response to the outbreak "has not been hindered by the lack of a secretary at HHS."

Tomorrow the debate over the Kansas Governor, which is loaded with interesting subplots, begins in earnest. According to the schedule, senators will have eight hours to deliberate over the nomination--and considering the controversy surrounding it, they may need every last second. Beginning at 10:00 a.m., senators will have to weigh plenty of unflattering evidence against Gov. Sebelius, including her political relationship with George Tiller, tax evasion, her dishonest testimony at the Senate Finance Committee hearing, her eleventh hour veto of a bill that would have advanced women's health in Kansas, and her support of third-trimester and taxpayer-funded abortions.

Although Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is confident that his party can find the 60 votes she needs for confirmation, a lot will hinge on the swing votes--Sens. Sam Brownback (R-Kans.), Pat Roberts (R-Kans.), Arlen Specter (R-Penn.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), and Susan Collins (R-Maine), as well as pro-life Democratic Sens. Ben Nelson (D-Nebr.) and Bob Casey (D-Penn.). With the debate looming, your senators need to hear from you! Please help us by redoubling your efforts over the next 24 hours. Call your senators and remind them that a vote for Kathleen Sebelius is a vote well outside of the American political and policy mainstream.

Also, stay tuned tomorrow as FRC hosts a morning press conference on Capitol Hill with a coalition of pro-life and pro-family leaders along with members of the Senate and House who all oppose Gov. Sebelius's nomination to America's largest government agency. We'll keep you updated with video and media clips as the event unfolds. While you're on the FRC webpage, check out our new ad on Sebelius questioning her priorities and appearing tomorrow in Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper.