The approval of Senate Bill 98 by the Georgia Legislature on March 17 puts Georgia one step closer to becoming the 25th state to reject Obamacare to cover abortion cost.
The bill is waiting for approval by Gov. Nathan Deal after a house vote of 105-64 and a senate vote of 36-18.
This law enforces the “opt-out” clause, which is what allows states to prohibit using Obamacare to cover abortions, according to the Reality Check’s website. The bill also states that taxpayers would no longer pay for the procedures, making women responsible for covering the expense of their abortions privately.
Senate Bill 98 authorizes Affordable Care Act coverage for abortions only in medical emergencies that would threaten the mother’ life, making no exception for rape or incest.
“It is a tremendous statement for all Georgians that your House passed SB 98 by a vote of 105-64. The people of Georgia do not want their tax dollars used for abortions. I want to thank everyone who prayed for and worked so hard on this effort especially my friends at Georgia Right to Life,” said Senator Judson Hill said about Senate Bill 98 on his website.
In an interview with WABE, Minority Whip Carolyn Hughley said the bill is anti women.
“From my perspective, what we’re saying to young women who are walking around the capital, we love you but you better not get raped because if you do we are expecting you to bring this baby to term,” Hughley said.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution website, Hughley said that public citizens were not allowed to testify last week when (R) Rep. Richard Smith, chairman of the House Insurance Committee, allowed his panel to approve the bill in less than 15 minutes.
“People came and wanted to be heard but were not allowed to speak on the bill. If we are going to take up uncomfortable subjects we have to be willing to talk about it,” Hughley said.
Heather Harton, a senior sociology major at Georgia State, said she doesn’t agree with the bill because it is another way to take control of a woman’s body.
“It’s health insurance and abortion is a health issue. If a woman is raped it’s not her choice,” Harton said.
Georgia State senior political science major Adrienne Randolph said she’s on the fence about the bill because she said some people use abortion as a substitute for birth control.
“The bad part about this bill is it doesn’t look out for poor women. There are some women who are unemployed and they can’t afford to pay for an abortion out of their own pocket,” Randolph said.