Gov. Jindal Op-Ed: Another Broken Promise: Obamacare and Abortion
It was bound to happen. After all the secret deals with special interests and Cornhusker Kickbacks used to pass Obamacare, after the extralegal waivers of Obamacare’s new insurance regulations—a majority of which went to participants in union plans—after the multiple delays of an insurance mandate for big business—but not for individuals—you just knew that Planned Parenthood and the pro-abortion lobby would get their political payback for supporting the Democrat machine.
And so it proved. Last week the non-partisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report highlighting all the ways in which the Obama Administration violated the law when it comes to federal funding of abortion coverage on Obamacare’s Exchanges. GAO found that over 1,000 insurance plans provide coverage of abortion procedures—and all of these plans are eligible to receive federal subsidies.
To ram Obamacare through Congress in 2010, the Administration claimed federal funds would not subsidize abortion. While the American people disagree on abortion, the vast majority agree that their tax dollars should not pay for it. Bowing to political pressure, the President agreed to legal language requiring insurers offering abortion coverage to submit a separate charge, and collect a separate premium, for those abortion services.
Ostensibly designed to segregate funds for abortion coverage from federal insurance subsidies, pro-life groups rightly denounced this accounting gimmick as a sham designed solely to give Democrats political cover to support the law. But the Administration has failed to enforce even this accounting gimmick, as GAO found numerous violations of the supposed segregation mechanism.
The GAO investigators found several other legal violations in their report. In five states, all Exchange plans covered abortion services—despite a requirement that the law include a multi-state plan, available in every state, that does not cover abortion. And several insurers had violated the legal requirement to inform consumers that their policies include abortion as a covered benefit. These actions have denied millions of Americans the ability to opt-out of plans to which they have strong moral objections.
Does the Administration care that they’re not following the law? Not in the slightest. But you don’t have to take my word for it. Earlier this month, the IRS Commissioner testified before Congress: “Whenever we can, we follow the law.” I’m not making those words up—that’s what he said.
And that sums up this Administration’s attitude in a nutshell—towards the abortion requirements in the law, and all the other provisions of Obamacare it hasn’t enforced. If it’s politically convenient, the Administration will wield the full power of the state against its opponents—witness the IRS’ illegal, partisan persecution of tea party groups and other conservative organizations. But when it comes to abortion, the Administration won’t even try to obey the law, and compel insurance companies to disclose whether their plans cover abortion or not.
Likewise, President Obama hasn’t bound himself to the promises he made when selling the law in the first place. Remember, the President promised in front of Congress that under his plan, “no federal dollars will be used to fund abortion”—a promise GAO has now exposed as false. What about “If you like your plan, you can keep it?” PolitiFact called it the “Lie of the Year.” And the infamous promise to lower premiums by $2,500? As an analysis released by America Next earlier this summer revealed, that pledge came up short by a mere $1.2 trillion.
On top of all the broken promises we had seen previously, the GAO report revealing just how taxpayer funds have been used to subsidize plans covering abortion provides that much more evidence why Obamacare must be repealed—every single word. And right after doing that, we need to enact a plan that lowers health costs—what President Obama promised to do in the first place—while protecting the sanctity of human life and the freedom of conscience.
This post was originally published at CBN News.