By an 8-to-5 vote, the State Senate Banking and Insurance Committee yesterday approved Senator Don White’s bill to place the “Obamacare” insurance system under Pennsylvania’s law banning the use of taxpayer funding for elective abortions.
Senate Bill 3 prohibits the taxpayer-funded state insurance health insurance exchanges, which will be in effect starting next year, from providing the coverage for abortions except in cases of rape, incest, or when the woman’s life is in danger, as provided in current state law.
White says opponents argue that the bill is unnecessary, but as other states have demonstrated, it clearly is not. Twenty-one states have enacted similar laws, and the Obamacare law pointedly gives states the right to do so.
White says Pennsylvania’s citizens, whether they support abortion rights or oppose them, do not believe taxpayers should have to pay for elective abortions. The senator said he wanted to be clear that the bill does not ban abortions, nor does it forbid private insurance companies from offering abortion coverage, but that it simply extends current state law to include the insurance exchanges.