Missouri Could Become Next State to Opt Out of Abortion Funding in Health Care
by Steven Ertelt
May 17, 2010
Jefferson City, MO (LifeNews.com) — Missouri could become the next state to opt out of abortion funding under the pro-abortion health care bill President Barack Obama signed into law. Arizona and Tennessee have already seen similar legislation signed into law while two other states have approved bills that have yet to be signed.
SB 793 is a bill which will prohibit insurance plans participating in new state taxpayer-funded health insurance exchanges from providing abortion coverage.
The bill also enhances the states existing informed consent law to ensure that women receive essential information about health risks and alternatives before choosing abortion.
Today, the people of Missouri are closer than ever to a new law that prevents taxpayer-funded abortion, Mary Harned, an attorney with Americans United for Life, told LifeNews.com. This outstanding bill also contains important protections for women in the state who have a right to know that they face serious health risks when choosing abortion.
SB 793 now goes to pro-abortion Governor Nixon for consideration and he has yet to have to decide whether to sign or veto an abortion bill.
The bill also ensures that women considering abortion are provided essential information and given the option to see an ultrasound image before having an abortion — which is something that, when used in pregnancy centers, convinces a large percentage of women to keep their baby instead of getting an abortion.
In addition, the bill provides that women contemplating abortion after 20 weeks be given information on the possibility of unborn children feeling pain during abortion.
The House passed the bill 114-39 last week and the Senate approved it 26-5 in April — and both vote totals exceed the two-thirds needed to override a veto.
"Like all legislation that goes to the Governor, it will receive a thorough and comprehensive review," said Nixon spokesman Scott Holste, according to an AP report.
During the debate, Speaker Pro Tem Bryan Pratt, who handled the bill, said, "If women have all the information about the abortion procedure, it’s my belief that many, many women will choose not to have an abortion."
Currently, according to the state health department, approximately 7,400 abortions are done annually at the state’s nine abortion centers or hospitals where they are done. However, a large number of Missouri residents get abortions in other states, with many traveling to the Illinois side of the border outside St. Louis, where an abortion center is located in Granite City.
Joe Ortwerth, executive director of the Missouri Family Policy Council, supported the bill as did Missouri Right to Life.
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