Republican leaders are informing their members that they will vote in favor of Rep. Bart Stupak's (D-Mich.) abortion amendment, The Hill has learned.
Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence (R-Ind.) will all vote for the amendment.
Stupak's proposal, which would explicitly bar federal dollars from going to any plans that cover abortion, will get an up or down vote later today. The amendment is opposed by most liberals but was granted a vote by Democratic leaders after Stupak threatened to whip votes against the bill.
UPDATE, from Molly Hooper:
Boehner announced his intention to support the Stupak amendment on Saturday morning.
At a press conference to unveil a busy chart created by Republicans highlighting the expansion of goverment in the Pelosi healthcare bill, Boehner said that he and his fellow leaders would support the Stupak amendment.
"We believe that taxpayer funding for abortion is wrong. We will do everything we can to stop that from happening, by passing the Stupak amendment," Boehner said surrounded by the top-ranking House GOP lawmakers.
The leader shot down chatter that some in his conference intended to vote present on the amendment championed by abortion rights opponents.
The leadership seems confident that they will keep the 177-person minority party unified when the final bill comes up for a vote.
GOP leaders risk losing one of their rank-and-file lawmakers if, as anticipated, the Stupak amendment is accepted in the final bill.
Vulnerable Rep. Joseph Cao (R-La.) has long said that he would oppose the bill if it didn't include explixit language banning federal dollars from paying for abortion services but has been open to supporting the president's overall bill.