Obamacare Day One: Many Americans Will Fund Abortions Without Their Consent
by Steven Ertelt | Washington, DC | LifeNews.com | 10/1/13 10:44 AM
With the launch of Obamacare enrollment today, October 1 in a landmark date that will have many Americans railroaded into health insurance plans that directly pay for abortions with their insurance premiums – sometimes without their knowledge and consent.
Enrollment in the exchanges is to begin on October 1, 2013, and the exchanges are to offer health insurance coverage to an estimated 7 million individuals starting on January 1, 2014 (increasing to about 24 million by 2022).
Under the ACA, health plans that provide abortion coverage are permitted to participate in the state exchanges, including the SHOPs, and those plans are permitted to obtain federal subsidies. While states are allowed to enact laws “opting out” of permitting insurance plans that cover abortions to participate in their exchanges, many states are unable or unwilling to do so.
“Buried in the pages of Obamacare is the ‘Covert Abortion Premium Mandate’ that forces people and their money into the business of abortion,” said Charmaine Yoest of Americans United for Life. “In light of the dangers of abortion to women and their unborn children, this policy is a disaster.”
Abortion is woven into the healthcare law at multiple levels, making repeal of the law a pro-life necessity, Yoest said, including a failure to prohibit the use of federal tax dollars for abortion, abortion coverage, and abortion-inducing drugs and devices; pretending that the Hyde Amendment protections were enough to prohibit direct payment for abortions; and permitting federally subsidized Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) to provide abortion coverage through the state insurance exchanges.
Yoest said Obamcare fails to prohibit all multi-state qualified health plans from providing coverage for abortion, includes a “preventive care” mandate that is being used to force coverage of drugs and devices known to end life, and fails to provide comprehensive First Amendment conscience protections for individuals, employers, and insurance companies that have religious or moral objections to abortion.
“Real healthcare respects life,” noted Yoest. “The impact of Obamacare will be new income streams for anti-life policies. In fact, you could call Obamacare the ‘Abortionist Full-Employment Act’ as it intertwines the finances of people, businesses, states and the federal government with the anti-life industry of abortion.”
Emily Buchanan of the Susan B. Anthony List says estimates show as many as 111,500 abortions will be covered annually with taxpayer dollars thanks to Obamacare.
“The Lozier Institute (our research arm) released a ground-breaking report showing that between 71,000 and 111,500 abortions each year could be subsidized by our hard-earned tax dollars under Obamacare. The report ended up on the influential Drudge Report, and Congress noticed,” she said. “That’s why the resolve to stop pro-abortion Obamacare is only growing. The pro-life House is refusing to give in to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and President Obama.”
Brad Mattes of Life Issues Institute exlpains many of the abortion funding problems:
The largest issue of contention is the abortion mandate. This is a secondary premium that’ll be on the majority of insurance plans and its sole purpose is to fund abortions. The reason this separate premium exists is because under the Hyde amendment, the government cannot directly provide funding for elective abortion services. This abortion surcharge will be collected by the insurance company, not the government, which is how Obamacare dodges the restrictions of the Hyde amendment.
What’s important to realize is the law dictates that the abortion surcharge is not disclosed until the time of enrollment. And even then, it can only be mentioned in the “Summary of Benefits and Coverage.” Essentially, it’s purposely hidden in the fine print. Your employer may not even know that their plan requires the abortion payment.
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That leaves you as the employee without options; as you don’t have the choice to be exempt from the abortion premium. Research shows that in the current insurance market, most health insurance plans do provide coverage for abortion because it’s less costly than paying for prenatal care and delivery. Under Obamacare, insurance plans that participate in state exchanges will be eligible to receive federal subsidies. States exchange programs will be established to only sell those designed by the government. Therefore, insurance plans without the abortion surcharge may prove difficult to find and may not provide the desired level of overall medical coverage. Purchasing health insurance independently is cost prohibitive for most families. And because of the law’s requirement to acquire health insurance, those who choose not to carry it will face fines. The federal government will offer at least one states exchange insurance plan that doesn’t include elective abortion. Although pro-lifers will have to intentionally seek it out and it may not include other preferred health plan benefits.
There are 26 states that have “opted out” of abortion coverage for their state. However, this doesn’t provide pro-lifers with a complete safeguard. Even if you’re covered by a plan that does not include abortion, as a taxpayer, you’re still contributing to government subsidies that fund plans with abortion coverage.
In addition, there’s concern regarding the HHS “preventive services” mandate requiring full coverage of abortion-causing drugs under the guise of contraception. This applies to almost all employers and insurance plans. For failure to comply, employers would be penalized with outrageous fines—as much as $15,000 per employer per day and $2,000 per employee per year. It’s been met with pushback by companies such as Hobby Lobby who’ve filed suit in opposition of this mandate. It’s likely this fight will continue to the Supreme Court with the objective of finding the HHS Mandate unconstitutional.