California bill demands insurance companies bankroll free abortions
The measure would violate current federal law
By Greg Burt
SACRAMENTO – Senator Lena Gonzalez (D-Long Beach) is seeking to make all abortions in California free, whether paid for by private or public insurance. The proposal, called SB 245, will be heard in the Senate Health Committee next week.
The bill forces all private insurance policies to cover abortions with no co-pays and no deductibles, despite the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) determination that California was already breaking federal law by forcing private health insurance plans to include coverage for abortion.
Last December, HHS Secretary Alex Azar announced his department would withhold $200 million from California unless the state changed course.
Now with former California Attorney General Xavier Becerra now in charge of HHS, Senator Lena Gonzalez seeks to lift abortion rights to an even more exalted status in a state already known for being one of the most pro-abortion in the country.
“For over four decades, the American people have spoken loudly and clearly: the government should not force us to pay for abortions,” said California Family Council President Jonathan Keller.
“But with SB 245, Senator Lena Gonzalez would require millions of pro-life Californians to violate their consciences and fund abortion through their health insurance. In addition to violating federal laws like the Weldon Amendment, this proposal is deeply offensive to people of faith. We urge Sacramento to reject this radical and unconstitutional mandate.”
The Senate Education Committee plans to hold a hearing on SB 245 on Wednesday, April 7th.
Greg Burt is Director of Capitol Engagement for the California Family Council.