Reproductive wrong

Texas approves plan to limit insurance coverage for abortions

Pro-abortion activists gather in front of the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC, on January 22, 2016. (NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)

The Texas Senate has supported a bill that would require women to buy extra health insurance to cover non-emergency abortions. The Associated Press reports that the measure has cleared the chamber and is expected to be signed into law by Governor Greg Abbott.

House Bill 214 requires women to pay a separate insurance premium if they want coverage for abortions that are not performed during a medical emergency. It does not stipulate exceptions for cases of fetal abnormalities, or for pregnancies that result from rape or incest.

The bill passed on a 20-10 vote in the Republican-controlled Senate. Republican Representative John Smithee told the AP that the legislation promotes “economic freedom” because it will ensure that Texas policyholders who oppose abortion will not have to subsidize the procedure.

According to The Texas Tribune, Texas Democrats petitioned for the bill to include exceptions for fetal abnormalities, rape, and incest. They also argued that the bill would force women to buy insurance for traumatic events that they cannot possibly anticipate.

“No woman plans to have an abortion and certainly no one can plan to be raped, no woman can plan to be sexually assaulted by someone she knows in her own family,” state Senator Sylvia Garcia told the publication.

Read the full story at the The Associated Press and The Texas Tribune.

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