Three weeks ago, the Wisconsin state Senate passed legislation to opt Wisconsin out of abortion subsidies in Obamacare. Last week, the Assembly Insurance Committee held a public hearing on its Assembly companion bill. This important legislation is authored by Senator Rich Zipperer (R-Pewaukee) and Representative Robin Vos (R-Racine).
Wisconsin Right to Life is the lead organization promoting this important legislation.
The federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), also known as Obamacare, requires the States to operate and maintain “health insurance exchanges” by 2014. Insurance plans must meet the federally-prescribed compliance requirements in order to participate in the exchanges.
These requirements include offering the essential health benefits package established by the federal Department of Health and Human Services. Participating plans are eligible to receive federal subsidies for those who qualify for insurance under the exchanges.
However PPACA specifically allows States to affirmatively prohibit coverage of abortions under the qualified health plans offered through the exchanges.
Under the Zipperer-Vos provision, a qualified health plan as defined in the federal law that is offered through any exchange operating in the State of Wisconsin may not cover any abortion whose performance is ineligible for funding under current Wisconsin law.
Since the late 1970s, Wisconsin law prohibits the funds of the state, a local government, or a long-term care district and federal funds passing through the state treasury to be used to pay for the performance of an abortion.
The legislation is expected to pass in both the committee and the full Assembly by wide margins.
“When this legislation becomes law, it will be huge victory for Wisconsin taxpayers and for unborn children,” said Susan Armacost, Legislative Director of Wisconsin Right to Life.