Alaska Medicaid Expansion Would Significantly Increase Taxpayer-Funded Abortions

State   |   Mallory Quigley   |   May 22, 2015   |   10:18AM   |   Juneau, AK

The Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI), the education and research arm of the national pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List, published a new paper examining how expansion of the Medicaid program in Alaska will significantly increase the number of abortions in the state. The analysis comes as the Alaska legislature considers a law that would expand Medicaid enrollment.

Alaska is one of 17 states that funds abortion through Medicaid. According to CLI Associate Scholar Michael J. New, Ph.D. who authored the paper, the expansion would increase the state abortion rate in at least four ways. The expansion will:

  • Add between 10,000 and 15,000 women of childbearing age onto the program, which already funds a high percentage of abortions in Alaska.
  • Result in more Medicaid-eligible women leaving non-abortion-covering insurance plans to enroll in the abortion-covering Medicaid program.
  • End the incentive for women to carry their children to term since an expansion would allow for childless low-income women who seek an abortion to remain on Medicaid.
  • Increase the amount of taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider whose Alaska affiliates perform a substantial amount of the state’s abortions.

The full text of the new paper may be found here.

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“Alaska already has one of the highest rates of publicly funded abortions in the country,” said Chuck Donovan, president of the Charlotte Lozier Institute. “Expanding the Medicaid program will encourage and incentivize abortion for low-income women and further devalue life in the state. Overall, Dr. New’s analysis validates prior concerns from pro-life groups about an increase of taxpayer-funded abortions under Obamacare, particularly when those states expand their Medicaid program under the health care law.”

An initial analysis by CLI from 2013 calculated that overall about 6 million women could potentially gain coverage for abortion under Obamacare, with half of those due to state Medicaid expansion. In 2014, CLI joined with Family Research Council to launch, an online resource for the general public to make up for the administration’s lack of transparency on abortion coverage in health insurance plans.