Rep. Smith Seeks New HHS Rule to Make Consumers Aware of Abortion Surcharge

101 Members of Congress join Smith in petition to HHS Secretary Azar

WASHINGTON—Today Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ) and 101 other Members of Congress sent a letter to Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar requesting new regulations to enforce the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) requirement that insurers participating in the ACA marketplace must collect a separate payment, or “abortion surcharge” if the plan covers elective abortion. Current regulations permit insurance companies to essentially hide the abortion surcharge from consumers.

In 2009, President Obama told Congress that the ACA would not pay for abortion. Sadly, that promise was broken. Research by has shown that, for 2018, roughly half of the plans sold on the ACA marketplace cover abortion on demand.

“Obamacare’s abortion surcharge is practically invisible to consumers,” said Smith, chair of the Bipartisan Congressional Pro-Life Caucus. “Consumers have a right to know. Abortion is not healthcare—it dismembers and chemically poisons defenseless unborn children and hurts women.”

“The Trump Administration now has the opportunity to take action and enforce the law to bring transparency to Obamacare’s abortion coverage and the abortion surcharge. No person should have to pay for abortion coverage they don’t want,” Smith said.

Congressman Smith is the prime sponsor of the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act (H.R. 7), which has passed the House of Representatives four times since 2011. This bill creates a government-wide, permanent protection against taxpayer dollars paying for abortion and health insurance plans that include abortion, and would permanently remedy the ACA’s unprecedented expansion of taxpayer funding for abortion coverage.