Destitute Illinois ponders state taxpayer funding of abortions
A measure that would have Illinois taxpayers fund abortions for all 3.1 million Medicaid recipients and 77,000 state employees is under consideration by the Illinois legislature.
Illinois House Bill 4013 (HB 4013) is on the agenda of House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago) this week in Springfield, as legislators convene for the final three days of the fall veto session.
The seven Democrat state representatives sponsoring the bill and other supporters, including Planned Parenthood of Illinois, say they believe abortions should be considered "health care" by the state, and that taxpayers shouldn't mind paying for them.
The bill's opponents say the bill allows the state to use taxpayer money to fund the killing of unborn children.
“It uses state tax dollars to pay for the killing of an unborn child,” said Robert Gilligan, Executive Director of the Catholic Conference of Illinois. “That is wrong. I don’t think I should have my tax dollars or your tax dollars go towards providing money to kill an unborn child.”
Gilligan says the bill would create state-funded incentives for abortion, by paying for them through Medicaid.
“The concern is that more people who could be in difficult situations would avail themselves on the opportunity to abort an unborn child,” Gilligan said. “That’s a termination of the human life which is, in essence, killing and which we think is wrong. We don’t think that the state should be in support of that. The state should in the business of providing incentive in some level for people to keep their child in order to help raise their child.”
Gilligan stated that he understands that not every pregnancy is welcomed. But he says the state should try to create conditions in which raising a child is welcomed. Adoption, he stated, is a viable alternative.
“There are also other things that we can do as a society to support a woman and her husband or partner or boyfriend to help them bring that child into the world and to raise it and love it so it can grow up into a human being,” Gilligan said. “The state should not be in the business of promoting termination of human life. It's a pretty macabre society that does that.”
He said that Illinois should be incentivize the creation of life instead of the ending of it.
“I think it is important to recognize incentives in life,” Gilligan said. “What is the incentive that we are providing to people? Is the state of Illinois providing the incentive to terminate the unborn child’s life? Or is the state of Illinois providing incentive whereby a child can be born into the world and loved and nurtured and grow up to a human being. This bill puts the incentive on the wrong part of that.”
HB 4013 will amend the State Employees Group Insurance Act of 1971, the Illinois Public Aid Code, and the Problem Pregnancy Health Services and Care Act, all of which previously prevented abortion funded with tax dollars.
House sponsors include Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago), Rep. Ann Williams (D-Chicago), Rep. Gregory Harris (D-Chicago), Rep. Emanuel Chris Welch (D-Westchester), Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie (D-Chicago), Rep. Elizabeth Hernandez (D-Cicero) and Rep. Carol Sente (D-Buffalo Grove).
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