The Illinois GOP Congressional Caucus Responds to HB 40
The Illinois GOP Congressional Caucus Responds to HB 40
Written By Laurie Higgins   |   09.26.17
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Great news from the congressional front!

In light of the possibility that Governor Bruce Rauner may renege on his commitment to veto HB 40—the bill that would require taxpayer-funding of abortions through Medicaid and state employee insurance plans through the entire 9 months of pregnancies—and the moral gravity of such an obscene (and costly) requirement, Illinois Family Institute Executive Director David Smith sent a letter to Illinois’ Republican congressmen requesting their help in persuading Governor Rauner to veto HB 40.

Earlier today, U.S. Congressmen Peter Roskam, John Shimkus, Randy Hultgren, Adam Kinzinger, Rodney Davis, Mike Bost, and Darin LaHood sent a letter to Governor Rauner urging him to do just that:

Dear Governor Rauner:

We are writing to convey our deepest concern about House Bill 40 which has been sent to your desk.

This bill would require taxpayers to subsidize abortions for those covered by Medicaid and for those covered by state employee health insurance through the full nine months of pregnancy. This includes painful late-term abortions, even past the point at which some children could survive outside the womb if given appropriate care.  Under HB 40, there is no cap on the number of abortions that could be covered under Medicaid and no cap on the amount of taxpayer dollars spent on these procedures.  Current estimates of cost to the State range from$1.8 million to $21 million.  While Illinois faces a financial crisis, it is unwise to place such a burden on the taxpayers.

Illinois state policy has been consistent with federal protections such as the Hyde Amendment which prohibits federal funding for abortion. The Hyde Amendment saves lives – at least 2 million people are alive today thanks to 40 years of Hyde Amendment protections.  This bill is an egregious step away from those protections by requiring public funding for abortions, which will surely result in more lives lost to the tragedy of abortion.

As you have said yourself, this bill wrongfully requires taxpayers to participate in funding abortions. While the political pressure may feel extreme, we respectfully ask you to focus on the underlying issue and not waiver on your commitment to protect taxpayers as well as the most vulnerable members of our community.  We ask you to veto this harmful legislation.

David Smith emphasizes the significance of this letter, particularly in conjunction with the unanimity of opposition to HB 40 among state lawmakers:

This letter to Gov. Rauner is vitally important. The entire Illinois House Republican Caucus and Illinois Senate Republican Caucus are uniformly opposed to HB 40. Now the Illinois Republican Congressional Delegation has weighed in opposing this legislation. I can only hope and pray that this puts tremendous pressure on our Republican Governor to veto this legislation.

I hope and pray other pro-life elected leaders will also speak out. We may not be able to overturn Roe v. Wade yet, but if enough conservatives speak out and overwhelm the governor’s office, we just might protect thousands of babies from the horror of abortion in Illinois.

Though there is a legal right for women to have their offspring killed, such a “right” does not confer on the public an obligation to pay for the deaths of these tiny human beings. In addition, aiding and abetting women in killing their own children is neither just, nor merciful, nor morally defensible.

The dismissively called “social issues” are fundamental cultural issues and crucibles that determine the moral worthiness of a society. Illinois Republican lawmakers deserve our thanks for their support for the lives of humans in the womb.

Will Republican Governor Rauner stand with pro-life, small government lawmakers in Congress and the General Assembly or will he stand with pro-abortion, big government Leftists?

Take ACTION: Click Here to email Governor Bruce Rauner. Urge him to keep his pledge to veto HB 40. Also, please continue to call the governor’s public comment line every day until this is resolved: (217) 782-0244 and (312) 814-2121. 

You can also send Gov. Rauner a message via Twitter: @GovRauner

Read Congressman Peter Roskam’s press release on this issue HERE.

Listen to Laurie read this article in this podcast:

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Laurie Higgins
Laurie Higgins was the Illinois Family Institute’s Cultural Affairs Writer in the fall of 2008 through early 2023. Prior to working for the IFI, Laurie worked full-time for eight years in Deerfield High School’s writing center in Deerfield, Illinois. Her cultural commentaries have been carried on a number of pro-family websites nationally and internationally, and Laurie has appeared on numerous radio programs across the country. In addition, Laurie has spoken at the Council for National Policy and educational conferences sponsored by the Constitutional Coalition. She has been married to her husband for forty-four years, and they have four grown children...
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