President Trump Protected Americans From Funding Abortions, Now Abortion Activists are Suing Him

National   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Feb 3, 2020   |   2:43PM   |   Washington, DC

Pro-abortion politicians are suing to block another Trump administration rule that protects Americans from being forced to pay for abortions.

KTVZ News 21 reports seven states and the District of Columbia filed the lawsuit Thursday against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), alleging the new rule about abortions through Obamacare is “onerous” and “unnecessary.”

Finalized in late December, the HHS rule requires insurers that sell Obamacare plans that cover elective abortions to collect a separate payment for that coverage, as required by law. Under the Obama administration, insurers were allowed to collect payments together in violation of statutory language. The new Trump administration rule ensures that women on Obamacare plans pay for elective abortions themselves, rather than American taxpayers.

But pro-abortion state attorneys general in Oregon, California, New York, Maine, Maryland, Oregon, Vermont and the District of Columbia said the rule is unlawful.

“I want to be very clear: This new rule is both confusing and unnecessary, and it is yet another attack on the right to a safe abortion,” Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum said. “It is designed to discourage insurers from covering abortion services, and to trick women into not paying their insurance premiums, potentially causing their insurance coverage to be revoked because they did not pay a separate one-dollar bill.”

Their lawsuit claims the rule imposes “onerous and unnecessary regulatory barriers” that threaten women’s right to abort their unborn babies, according to the report. It also argues that the rule violates states’ rights by “coercing” them to change their Obamacare abortion policies.

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Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson, a pro-abortion Democrat, claimed the rule may confuse people who have Obamacare insurance plans and “jeopardize their coverage.”

“The Trump Administration’s new rule, which applies specifically to individual qualified health plans, requires insurance companies to request the abortion payment in a ‘separate transaction,’” his office said in a statement. “In other words, enrollees must receive two separate bills for the same insurance plan each month — one for abortion coverage and one for all other coverage — and must be asked to make two separate payments.”

But pro-life leaders said the rule increases transparency as well as protects taxpayers.

In 12 of 24 states and the District of Columbia that provide taxpayer-funded Obamacare insurance plans, 80 percent or more of those plans cover elective abortions. In eight of those locales, every single Obamacare plan covers elective abortion – though taxpayers may not know it.

In 2014, the Charlotte Lozier Institute and Family Research Council launched as a resource to help consumers find health plans that do not include elective abortion.

That same year, a report from the non-partisan Government Accountability Office found massive public funding of abortion in President Barack Obama’s health care law. When he signed Obamacare into law, Obama promised the American people that it would not pay for abortions. He even signed an executive order to that effect. But the GAO report found that he misled Americans.

Pro-life advocates and politicians praised the Trump administration for the new rule in December.

Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser said it was a victory for transparency and American taxpayers.

She told, previously: “Obamacare was the largest expansion of taxpayer-funded abortion since Roe v. Wade, dramatically increasing abortion funding by subsidizing plans that cover abortion on demand. Making this dramatic expansion even more onerous, the Obama administration allowed insurers to ignore the law by burying the abortion surcharge in plan documents instead of collecting it separately. This new rule will ensure compliance so that ‘separate’ no longer means ‘together’ when it comes to funding abortion.”

U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska said the rule brings insurance companies that had flaunted the law under the Obama administration into compliance.

“This pro-life, pro-transparency rule is an important step in the right direction. Obamacare uses publicly-subsidized plans that cover abortion on demand. The Obama Administration hid the ball by letting insurance companies bury a legally required abortion surcharge in paperwork, but this new Trump Administration rule makes sure that the fee is out in the open,” he said in December.

President Donald Trump’s record on pro-life values has been strong. In one of his first acts as president, he reinstated and expanded the Mexico City Policy, which prohibits taxpayer funding to international groups that promote or provide abortions overseas. The change defunded Planned Parenthood’s international arm of about $100 million in U.S. tax dollars.

His administration also finalized a new Title X rule that requires health care entities to completely separate abortion from their taxpayer-funded services. Planned Parenthood lost about $60 million in taxpayer funding through the policy change.

Additionally, it is working to expand religious freedom for the Little Sisters of the Poor, pro-life medical workers and others who think killing an unborn child is wrong.