Friday, December 6, 2013

Detroit News editorial against Abortion Insurance Opt-Out fails miserably

The Detroit News has published an embarrassing, error-plagued editorial against the Abortion Inusrance Opt-Out Act.  The editorial begins by claiming that prolife legislators are being “bullied” into voting for prolife legislation. 

Right to Life of Michigan is flexing its muscle in presenting the state Legislature with a do-or-die choice to limit insurance coverage of abortion. Lawmakers should not let themselves be bullied.

How can prolife legislators who voted in favor of this legislation last year and the majority of whom signed a petition to initiate this legislation be bullied into voting for something they favor? 

Lawmakers should reject this bill and let the entire Michigan electorate decide whether or not it’s appropriate. Polls suggest only one-third of state voters support the measure.

Lawmakers are elected to vote on legislation.  The editorial seems to believe that citizen-initiated legislation doesn’t deserve a vote from lawmakers but provides no reasoning for why lawmakers shouldn’t vote on this type of legislation. 

One has to wonder why the editorial lists "one-third" of voters as being supportive when the latest polls on the legislation covered by the Detroit News cite 41% and 42% as the number of voters in favor of the legislation with large numbers of undecided voters. 

Right to Life’s motives in this push are suspect. The group is attacking a problem that barely exists. In Michigan, just 3.3 percent of 22,700 abortions in 2012 were paid for by insurance, according to the state Department of Community Health.

Apparently, the News believes that the lives of 739 unborn children a year in Michigan are not a problem.  This also fails to address the reality that Obamacare’s subsidies for plans which cover abortion could increase the number of women seeking to use insurance to pay for abortion.

Obamacare does not mandate abortion be included in insurance policies. In fact, thanks to an amendment authored by former Michigan Congressman Bart Stupak, there are so many hoops to jump through that most policies in the Obamacare exchanges don’t cover abortions.

There is no evidence that most policies in the Obamacare exchanges don’t cover abortions.  It was recently reported that over 90% of plans offered in the Washington, D.C. market to Congress and their staffers include abortion coverage. 

It’s a bully tactic aimed at forcing women to make the decision about where they stand on abortion well before the issue becomes personal. It also forces lawmakers to publicly declare themselves on abortion in advance of the 2014 elections.

Why is it a bully tactic to say abortion isn’t health care and our tax dollars and health care premiums shouldn’t paying for someone else’s abortion?  The real "bully tactic" is making the public pay for the abortion of someone else. 

Lawmakers publicly declare themselves on abortion before every election.  That how elections work.  People looking to be elected share their views with people who they want to vote for them.  For a news organization to oppose politicians declaring themselves publicly on an issue is bizarre. 

This was a needless battle to engage in. Lawmakers should reject the ploy and make Right to Life decide how much it’s willing to spend to promote a ballot measure that would have a very slim chance of passing and would not change the abortion reality in Michigan even if it did.

If this legislation would not change the abortion reality in Michigan then why is this editorial arguing against it?  If the battle is so needless then why is the Detroit News engaging itself in it?

Right to Life of Michigan will continue to work to save the lives of unborn children.  We’ll continue to work to make sure that abortion is not a standard part of health care and that our tax dollars and health care premiums aren’t used to subsidize abortion coverage.