Thursday, January 30, 2014

House Says 'No' To Abortion Funding

On Jan. 28, 2014, the US House of Representatives passed HR 7, a law that bans use of US federal tax dollars to fund abortions in the US.

HR 7, titled the "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2014" passed by a vote of 227-118, with one abstaining. 221 Republicans voted for the bill as did 6 Democrats who crossed the aisle. 1 Republican opposed, another abstained, with the remaining 8 not present.

The bill was introduced by Rep. Christopher Smith (R-NJ-4). 171 additional representatives co-sponsored the bill including 167 Republicans and 4 Democrats. Among those 171 co-sponsors were 20 representatives from Texas. Texas was the state with the largest number of co-sponsors of the bill.

Some who would oppose this bill claim it would restrict much needed aid to victims of rape or incest. However, the bill text itself states that the prohibition does not apply in those cases.

SEC. 101. PROHIBITING TAXPAYER FUNDED ABORTIONS.

Title 1, United States Code is amended by adding at the end the
following new chapter:

``CHAPTER 4--PROHIBITING TAXPAYER FUNDED ABORTIONS

``301. Prohibition on funding for abortions.
``302. Prohibition on funding for health benefits plans that cover
abortion.
``303. Limitation on Federal facilities and employees.
``304. Construction relating to separate coverage.
``305. Construction relating to the use of non-Federal funds for health
coverage.
``306. Non-preemption of other Federal laws.
``307. Construction relating to complications arising from abortion.
``308. Treatment of abortions related to rape, incest, or preserving
the life of the mother.
``309. Application to District of Columbia.
``Sec. 301. Prohibition on funding for abortions
``No funds authorized or appropriated by Federal law, and none of
the funds in any trust fund to which funds are authorized or
appropriated by Federal law, shall be expended for any abortion.
``Sec. 302. Prohibition on funding for health benefits plans that cover
abortion
``None of the funds authorized or appropriated by Federal law, and
none of the funds in any trust fund to which funds are authorized or
appropriated by Federal law, shall be expended for health benefits
coverage that includes coverage of abortion.
``Sec. 303. Limitation on Federal facilities and employees
``No health care service furnished--
``(1) by or in a health care facility owned or operated by
the Federal Government; or
``(2) by any physician or other individual employed by the
Federal Government to provide health care services within the
scope of the physician's or individual's employment,
may include abortion.
``Sec. 304. Construction relating to separate coverage
``Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as prohibiting any
individual, entity, or State or locality from purchasing separate
abortion coverage or health benefits coverage that includes abortion so
long as such coverage is paid for entirely using only funds not
authorized or appropriated by Federal law and such coverage shall not
be purchased using matching funds required for a federally subsidized
program, including a State's or locality's contribution of Medicaid
matching funds.
``Sec. 305. Construction relating to the use of non-Federal funds for
health coverage
``Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as restricting the
ability of any non-Federal health benefits coverage provider from
offering abortion coverage, or the ability of a State or locality to
contract separately with such a provider for such coverage, so long as
only funds not authorized or appropriated by Federal law are used and
such coverage shall not be purchased using matching funds required for
a federally subsidized program, including a State's or locality's
contribution of Medicaid matching funds.
``Sec. 306. Non-preemption of other Federal laws
``Nothing in this chapter shall repeal, amend, or have any effect
on any other Federal law to the extent such law imposes any limitation
on the use of funds for abortion or for health benefits coverage that
includes coverage of abortion, beyond the limitations set forth in this
chapter.
``Sec. 307. Construction relating to complications arising from
abortion
``Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to apply to the
treatment of any infection, injury, disease, or disorder that has been
caused by or exacerbated by the performance of an abortion. This rule
of construction shall be applicable without regard to whether the
abortion was performed in accord with Federal or State law, and without
regard to whether funding for the abortion is permissible under section
308.
``Sec. 308. Treatment of abortions related to rape, incest, or
preserving the life of the mother
``The limitations established in sections 301, 302, and 303 shall
not apply to an abortion--
``(1) if the pregnancy is the result of an act of rape or
incest; or
``(2) in the case where a woman suffers from a physical
disorder, physical injury, or physical illness that would, as
certified by a physician, place the woman in danger of death
unless an abortion is performed, including a life-endangering
physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy
itself.
``Sec. 309. Application to District of Columbia
``In this chapter:
``(1) Any reference to funds appropriated by Federal law
shall be treated as including any amounts within the budget of
the District of Columbia that have been approved by Act of
Congress pursuant to section 446 of the District of Columbia
Home Rule Act (or any applicable successor Federal law).
``(2) The term `Federal Government' includes the government
of the District of Columbia.''.

The bill does not just address direct or indirect taxpayer funding of abortions. It removes abortion coverage from insurance plans covered or subsidized by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) also known as "Obamacare". It does not make abortion insurance coverage illegal. It prohibits the IRS from granting tax-breaks or subsidies to either consumers or insurance providers for plans including such coverage. The bill enables insurance companies to sell addendum plans or options for such coverage, instead.

Subsection (h) of section 45R of the Internal Revenue Code of
1986 is amended--

     (A) by striking ``Any term'' and inserting the
following:
       ``(1) In general.--Any term''; and
     (B) by adding at the end the following new
paragraph:

       ``(2) Exclusion of health plans including coverage for
abortion.--
     ``(A) In general.--The term `qualified health plan'
does not include any health plan that includes coverage
for abortions (other than any abortion or treatment
described in section 307 or 308 of title 1, United
States Code).
     ``(B) Separate abortion coverage or plan allowed.--
           ``(i) Option to purchase separate coverage
or plan.--Nothing in subparagraph (A) shall be
construed as prohibiting any employer from
purchasing for its employees separate coverage
for abortions described in such subparagraph,
or a health plan that includes such abortions,
so long as no credit is allowed under this
section with respect to the employer
contributions for such coverage or plan.
           ``(ii) Option to offer coverage or plan.--
Nothing in subparagraph (A) shall restrict any
non-Federal health insurance issuer offering a
health plan from offering separate coverage for
abortions described in such subparagraph, or a
plan that includes such abortions, so long as
such separate coverage or plan is not paid for
with any employer contribution eligible for the
credit allowed under this section.''.

(3) Conforming aca amendments.--Section 1303(b) of Public
Law 111-148 (42 U.S.C. 18023(b)) is amended--
     (A) by striking paragraph (2);
     (B) by striking paragraph (3), as amended by
section 202(a); and
     (C) by redesignating paragraph (4) as paragraph
(2).
The bill has been received by the US Senate, read twice, and been passed to committee. Several US Senators, including Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), have already called on Harry Reid to allow the bill a floor vote. 




 

More Reasons To Support Than Oppose


Many pro-life proponents  rejoice the bill's passage in the House and hope it also passes the US Senate. However, due to the Democrat majority, the potential does not seem too high. That is despite pro-life activists existing on both sides of the political aisle.

Still, more libertarian leaning pro-choice individuals would also support this bill. The bill does not ban abortions or restrict choice. What it does is protect taxpayers, placing the responsibility of such a choice fully on the one making it.

Some of the pro-choice arguments against this bill include the "war on poverty" claim. The claim is that taxpayer funded abortions help reduce taxpayer burdens in other ways. The main way presented is a low-income mother aborting her child would equate one less mouth to feed using SNAP (food stamp) funding.

This argument can be refuted by reminding citizens of the racist eugenics history of such programs. Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger supported providing free or low-cost abortions to those "poor" segments of society she felt were undesirable. Those demographics were comprised of any citizen who could not be classified as a left-wing-minded WASP.

The federal tax revenue that would have been used towards abortions or abortion coverage subsidies could be much better managed. It could be placed into programs that promote and provide incentives to generate capital growth, business development, and job creation. The same could be said of extended long-term unemployment handouts.

A Note From The Editor/Author: 


Many pro-life associates believe I am hardcore pro-life. That is not true.

Many pro-choice associates also make that assumption. It remains untrue.

I used to support abortions up to 26 weeks. Then I saw the number of babies born at 20-25 weeks who, due to modern science and a will to live, survived the premature birth. I, myself, was a "premie". As such, I am a living testament to that human survival ability.

My thought readjusted. I then reconsidered the timeline when that "bunch of cells" would be closer to a developed human being. Rather than advocating for infanticide, since a "developed human being" really does not exist until adulthood (and sometimes never, if you regard various 30-something boomerangs living in momma's basement), I went the other direction. I reset my cut-off to be about 16 weeks. I saw the documentary "Silent Scream". The infant aborted in that film was just over 16 weeks.

12 weeks is the approximate end of the first trimester. That is 3 months into a pregnancy. 90 days should be more than enough for a woman to confirm a pregnancy test and make up her mind to kill the embryo. After those 90 days, the child is developed to the point it is clearly identifiable as a viable human being.

Abortion would not be my choice. I'm not a woman and will never have the full burden of such a choice presented to me. However, if I fathered a child, I would want it to live, grow, and thrive. I would support and nurture my child. Those mothers who feel they are unable to do so have the option to surrender their children for adoption. But, within reason and a reasonable time-frame, I am not one to take away somebody's right to make a bad choice and suffer its consequences.

I do, however, fully oppose anybody who was not a direct genetic material provider (biological mother or father) being forced, coerced, defrauded, or otherwise duped into paying for it. If you want one, be decisive and make up your mind within 12 weeks. Then pay for it yourself. Leave me out of it.