Illinois House Panel Passes Pro-Abortion Reproductive Health and Access Act

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 10, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Illinois House Panel Passes Pro-Abortion Reproductive Health and Access Act

by Steven Ertelt Editor
March 10
, 2010

Springfield, IL ( — An Illinois House committee on Wednesday passed the Reproductive Health and Access Act, a bill that would aggressively promote abortion. The Illinois House of Representatives Human Services Committee passed HB 6205 on a 5-2 vote despite opposition from pro-life groups.

The legislation would make abortion a “fundamental right” in Illinois — meaning abortion would stay legal in Illinois even if Roe v. Wade is someday overturned in the Supreme Court.

The bill also would require taxpayer funding of Medicaid abortions and is similar to the federal Freedom of Choice Act that pro-life advocates have fought for two decades in Congress.

Eric Scheidler, executive director of the Pro-Life Action League, which has been helping lead the battle against this legislation along with state pro-life groups and Americans United for Life, told he is disappointed by the vote.

"HB 6205 would be a massive expansion of abortion in our state, and the people of Illinois won’t stand for it. We are ready to fight this bill, and we will defeat it," he said.

Scheidler said the legislation has united the Illinois pro-life community.

“The pro-life movement in Illinois united to defeat the RHAA last year, and we’re ready to do it again this year," he said.

Meanwhile, the Illinois-based Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer, a national pro-life group that educates on the link between abortion and breast cancer, also weighed in against the bill.

"Contrary to what the bill’s title says, it will significantly damage the health of women and their children in subsequent pregnancies," declared Karen Malec, president of the group. "It is indisputable that an expansion of abortion in Illinois will lead to increased rates of breast cancer and premature births."

"Medical texts report that increased childbearing, starting at a younger age, and increased breastfeeding sharply reduce breast cancer risk," Malec told "Childbearing helps protect women from breast cancer. Abortion results in the loss of that protective effect. Doctors are ethically obligated to inform pregnant women that abortion will leave them with a higher breast cancer risk than would childbearing."

The number of abortions done in Illinois in 2008 rose 5 percent from the year before, according to new figures from the state health department in January.

The state Department of Public Health reported 47,717 abortions in 2008, the latest year for which it has figures.That is a 5 percent uptick from 2007 and the highest recorded abortion total in 10 years.

Though the figure is lower than the 1998 stat of 49,403 unborn children killed in abortions, most other states saw abortions decline at higher rates in the late 1990s and during the current decade.

ACTION: Contact your legislators at and urge opposition to the bill.

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