Arizona Is One Step Closer To Passing A Controversial Abortion Bill

| by Amanda Andrade-Rhoades

Arizona lawmakers have passed a measure that blocks women from buying insurance that includes abortion coverage through the federal health care exchange, Reuters reported.

The bill will now go to Republican Gov. Doug Ducey, who has said he’s opposed to abortion, but it’s unclear whether he’ll veto the bill or sign it into law.

The bill also requires doctors to tell women they can reverse the effects of a chemical abortion, although there’s no scientific evidence to support that claim. 

Though the bill provides exemptions for incest, rape and situations in which the mother’s life would be at risk, opponents say the bill overreaches the confines of the law.

Supporters argue that the bill prevents taxpayer dollars from paying for abortions because many of the people who seek coverage through the federal health care exchange receive government subsidies. 

Opponents counter that there’s no evidence taxpayer money has been used for elective procedures like abortion. 

The bill, which was highly contested, was passed by an 18-11 vote in the predominantly Republican Senate, and House members passed the bill 33-24.

Democrats largely opposed the bill and pointed to the lack of scientific evidence backing the bill’s claim that a drug-induced abortion could be reversed.

“This is junk science, this is quack medicine," said Senate Minority Leader Katie Hobbs, a Phoenix Democrat. "There is absolutely no evidence anywhere ... that supports this as a valid medical procedure.”

Cathi Herrod, president of the Center for Arizona Policy, a conservative group that supported the bill, said, "This is a great day for woman [sic] in Arizona who are considering getting an abortion to get all the facts they need and a great day for Arizona taxpayers.”

Source: Reuters / Image via Anna Levinzon/Flickr