One of many efforts President Trump has undertaken to get American taxpayer dollars out of the abortion industry is another step closer to coming to fruition.
Last November, the Trump administration issued a new rule designed to protect Americans from being forced to pay for abortions under Obamacare. At that time, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued a new rule directing insurers selling Obamacare plans that cover elective abortion to collect a separate payment from enrollees for that coverage, as required by law. Under the Obama administration, insurers were allowed to collect these payments together in violation of clear statutory language.
In 2018, taxpayer-funded Obamacare insurance plans in 24 states and the District of Columbia are allowed to cover elective abortion with an embedded abortion surcharge forcing taxpayers to fund them. In 10 of those states more than 85 percent of Obamacare plans cover abortion on demand, including seven states where every single Obamacare plan for individuals and families covers elective abortion.
The new rules protect taxpayers from having their tax dollars pay for abortions, and required insured people to pay for their own abortions.
Under federal law, such laws don’t go into effect immediately, they are subject to a public comment period first. Today, that comment period on these new rules comes to a close. Once the department has had a chance to review the public comments, implementation can move forward.
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At the same the rules were promulgated, National Right to Life applauded the new rule in statements sent to LifeNews.
“While only comprehensive legislative reform can cure the multiple abortion-expanding components of Obamacare, today’s proposed rule from the Trump Administration sends a strong message that the federal government ought to get out of the business of paying for abortion until Obamacare can be replaced,” said Jennifer Popik, J.D., National Right to Life legislative director.
National Right to Life President Carol Tobias added, “We applaud President Trump and his administration for enforcing the law and seeking to uphold the principles of the Hyde Amendment to prevent the use of tax dollars to pay for abortion coverage.”
Another leading pro-life group praised the Trump administration for issuing the new rule.
“We thank President Trump and HHS Secretary Azar for enforcing the law and providing much-needed transparency about Obamacare’s abortion coverage,” said SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser, in remarks to LifeNews.
She added: “Obamacare was the largest expansion of taxpayer-funded abortion on demand since Roe. Then, the Obama administration went even further by allowing insurers to ignore the plain language of the law that said an abortion surcharge had to be collected separately. Instead, the Obama administration allowed the “separate” abortion surcharge to be collected along with regular premiums, effectively defining ‘separate’ to mean ‘together.’ Thanks to this trickery, millions of Americans have unwittingly purchased plans without knowing about the hidden abortion surcharge. Consumers deserve to know how Obamacare pays for abortion so they can avoid having their hard-earned dollars used to fund the destruction of innocent lives. Congress must still act to eliminate abortion funding from Obamacare, but until then, the rule issued today is an important step in the right direction.”