Critics say HB 40 likely to increase number of abortions in state
Gov. Bruce Rauner recently announced he will sign controversial abortion funding expansion House Bill 40 into law, which critics say will increase the number of abortions from the reported 61 in Coles County and 117 in Vermillion County in 2015.
Illinois Right to Life estimates this bill will lead to 12,000 additional abortions each year at a cost of more than $21 million. The group based its findings on Medicaid figures from the late 1970s, the last time Illinois had unrestricted Medicaid funded abortions.
In addition, Right to Life said HB40 would lead to more fraud in the abortion industry. On its website, the group cited a congressional investigation that revealed massive overbilling by Planned Parenthood, the largest provider of abortions in the country.
Those opposed to the expansion had urged Rauner to issue an amendatory veto that would keep language deleting a trigger that would again make abortions a felony in the state if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, but strike the provision requiring taxpayers to fund abortions, under Medicaid and state government health insurance, at any point in a pregnancy.
Funding is currently limited to cases of rape, incest, and health and life of the mother.
Ralph Rivera, lobbyist for Illinois Right to Life Action, told Prairie State Wire that “by deleting the trigger, and yet preserving the funding restrictions, the governor can both appeal to the other side and the over 60 percent of those in Illinois who oppose public funding of abortion.”
Rivera added that the language in the trigger is powerless anyway.
“We kept telling them (lawmakers) that the way the trigger was written would not hold up in court, but the other side put the deletion of it in anyway and got some votes because of it,” he said
With the signing of the bill, Rauner will break his earlier promise to veto it when the Democratically controlled Legislature began considering it. The House approved it in April and the Senate followed in May.
Reported induced pregnancy terminations in 2015 by county of residence
The table below shows the number of induced pregnancy terminations in 2015. Counties not included had 50 or less.
Source: Illinois Department of Public Health