Michigan has become the ninth state to opt out of funding for abortions, which would require customers to purchase an abortion rider, after the legislation approved the law on Wednesday. According to ABC News on Dec. 12, the vote in the Michigan Senate was 27-11, while the Michigan House was 62-47, making it illegal for both public and private insurance companies to cover an abortion unless an extra supplemental policy is obtained.
This will prevent anyone from being forced to fund women’s abortions as part of the Opt-Out program. More than 316,000 signatures were on a petition asking for a vote to protect the rights of an unborn child. This law does not require a signature by Governor Snyder, who is said to be pro-life, or to be on a statewide ballot. The petition was started by Right to Life of Michigan and this is a huge celebration for them.
“Abortion is not true health care and people who object will not have to contribute their own tax dollars or insurance premiums for elective abortions,” said Right to Life of Michigan President, Barbara Listing. “This law is instrumental in preserving our long tradition of protecting the conscience rights of Michigan citizens before the Affordable Care Act takes full effect in 2014.”
This law, which will not go into effect until March, will protect those who are personally and morally opposed to abortions. Many opponents have called it ‘rape insurance’ because there is no exception in the law for rape or incest. The only exception is if the mother's life is in danger.
This controversial issue has long been debated and has both sides in heated arguments over women’s rights and the rights of the unborn baby. Just as Barbara Listing is out to protect human life, the pro-choice groups that are fighting for the rights of women, have also spoken out on this legislation.
"Do not under estimate the power of a lot of angry women and the men who support us," said State Rep. Marcia Hovey-Wright, D-Muskegon. "A 'yes' vote puts you on the wrong side of history. It's actually a force out, not an opt out."
Michigan has spoken on this issue for now and is sure to bring more heat with it.