Alaska Paid for 623 Abortions With Taxpayer Dollars in 2011

State   |   Bob Flint   |   Feb 7, 2013   |   5:16PM   |   Washington, DC

In 2011 the State of Alaska paid for at least 623 abortions with state funds, your money. This constituted nearly 40 percent of all abortions performed in Alaska that year. Prior to 2001 the state paid only for abortions where the life of the mother was endangered or the pregnancy was the result of rape or incest consistent with federal law.

The U. S. Supreme Court, which invented the abortion “right” in the first place, had ruled that the U. S. Constitution does not require the government to pay for abortions. The Alaska Supreme Court, however, took the invention of abortion “rights” one step further and required that Alaska use its state funds to pay for all “medically necessary” abortions even if the federal government would not. As a result, for the last 12 years, Alaska has paid for all abortions requested by abortion doctors without inquiring whether they were “medically necessary.”

The 2001 Alaska decision, however, left a big loophole for the state executive or legislative branch to close. The court distinguished between “medically necessary” and “elective” abortions. The first, it ruled, must be paid but not the second. The problem is that abortion doctors routinely consider all abortions “medically necessary,” even those performed for economic and psychological reasons, or no reason except personal preference. Jan Whitefield, Alaska’s leading abortion doctor, has so testified in court. The state rubber stamps and pays an abortionist’s bill, no questions asked.

For 12 years nothing has been done to end this scandal. The Alaska Supreme Court’s 2001 decision, though, listed examples of “medically necessary.” These examples cited severe and extraordinary physical conditions, applicable to only a small percentage of pregnancies and certainly not including economic or psychological reasons. To curb this outrageous abuse of public funds, a definition of “medically necessary,” crafted by medical and legal experts, is necessary to eliminate state payment for elective abortions. Either as a regulation adopted by the executive or a statute by the state legislature, such a definition has the potential to eliminate most state payments for abortions.

Governor Sean Parnell’s administration recently adopted a regulation requiring abortion doctors to certify that all requests for state funding for abortions are for only “medically necessary” procedures. As stated above, this new regulation is useless. These doctors will continue to maintain the absurd position that all abortions are “medically necessary.”

Creative judges invented abortion “rights,” declaring that the government had to allow for the destruction of unborn children. The Alaska Supreme Court has gone beyond this — requiring the government to be the financial benefactor for the abortion industry. Short of a constitutional amendment or a return of judicial sanity (neither likely) we will be unable to overturn the evil of Roe v. Wade and its consequences. We can, however, get the State of Alaska largely out of the dirty business of abortion.

As long as the recently deposed bi-partisan state senate coalition had control in Juneau, no such legislation, nor any pro-life legislation such as parental notification, would be considered. The Senate Judiciary Committee, headed by Senator Hollis French, D-Anchorage, blocked everything. Senator French is no longer on the committee so the issue can be now considered and debated as the public process requires.



This won’t be easy but it can be done.

Planned Parenthood and its stable of abortion doctors are well heeled and determined to preserve their place at the public trough (consuming over half a billion in federal dollars last year). The parental notification initiative, ignored by the former senate coalition, but approved by the voters in 2010, has already resulted in a drop of about 100 abortions in Alaska last year, thus saving lives. Cutting off public funds to abortion doctors can result in the survival of hundreds more. The lives of these children are worth the struggle.

LifeNews Note: The writer practiced law in Anchorage for 46 years and is a founding member of the Anchorage St. Thomas More Society. Reprinted with permission from the Catholic Anchor.