Michigan Right to Life, a pro-life organization, recently gathered enough signatures to advance what pro-choice advocates call "rape insurance" to the state legislature.
The legislative initiative would ban abortion coverage in all health insurance plans, including in the cases of rape or incest. Women would have to buy an additional plan to be covered for abortion. However, they would not be able to buy the extra plan after being raped.
That is why pro-choice advocates have dubbed it “rape insurance.”
“It’s not like, oh, I was raped and so now I’ll buy this rider,” Meghan Groen, of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan, told RHRealityCheck.org. “Nobody is anticipating being a victim of crime.”
"We think this is an incredibly dangerous proposal, not only for the health of a woman, but also the risk that the health-care industry will have to undertake,” added Shelli Weisberg, of ACLU of Michigan.
Even though there is an exception in the legislative initiative for abortion in the cases when a woman's life is in danger, Weisberg explained to RHrealityCheck.org that if a health insurance company doesn’t agree the woman’s life was in danger, then the hospital and doctor wouldn't get paid. But the same hospital and doctor could get sued if an abortion were not provided in a life-or-death situation.
The Michigan Secretary of State approved the legislative initiative this week, which will not need a signature from Michigan Governor Rick Snyder (R).
Last year, Gov. Snyder, who is pro-life, vetoed a normal bill containing the same language.
"It just went too far," said Gov. Snyder at the time, noted The Huffington Post.
“Michigan citizens don't want to pay for other people's abortions with tax dollars or through their insurance premiums,” Pam Sherstad, of Michigan Right to Life, told the Detroit Free Press. “This doesn't have to do with legalized abortions, it just has to do with who pays for it.”
However, according to a recent poll, 47 percent of voters in Michigan oppose the bill, while 41 support and 13 had no opinion, reports the Detroit Free Press.
While some Democrats in the Michigan legislature oppose the legislative initiative, there are enough pro-life lawmakers to pass it.
If it gets voted down, then voters would decide on it in 2014.