The Governor of Texas has signed into law a Bill which protects pro-life advocates from having to pay for abortions in the state.
House Bill 214 means that abortions are no longer automatically covered by private health insurance, but women can opt to pay extra for the cover.
Governor Abbott said he was proud to sign the legislation, saying it “ensures no Texan is required to pay for a procedure that ends the life of an unborn child”.
Representative John Smithee, the Bill’s lead author, said that abortion opponents should not have to subsidise elective abortions, and that this law protects them from being forced to pay for a procedure they feel is immoral.
“This isn’t about who can get an abortion,” he said, “It’s about who is forced to pay for an abortion.”
The Bill was signed into law on the same day as a contrasting Bill in Oregon, which extends taxpayer funding of abortions.
House Bill 3391 would expand coverage of abortions and other reproductive services to thousands of people living in Oregon.
Oregon already has the most liberal abortion laws in the US, allowing abortion at any time for any reason, including on the basis of a baby’s sex.
Representative Mike Nearman, who opposed the Bill, said that Oregon had now moved from permitting abortion to advancing it, adding that “the only thing we have left is to promote it”.