Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
California Threatened With Funds Loss Over Abortion Coverage
gvw_ap_news
By Associated Press
Published 4 years ago on
January 24, 2020

Share

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration on Friday threatened California with a potential loss of federal health care funds over the state’s requirement that insurance plans cover abortions.
The announcement, timed to coincide with the anti-abortion March for Life in the nation’s capital, came hours before President Donald Trump was scheduled to address the marchers in person, becoming the first president to do so. Religious conservatives are a core element of Trump’s political coalition, and his administration has gone out of its way to deliver on their demands.

“If states receive federal funds … they cannot discriminate against a health plan that declines to cover abortions.” — Roger Severino, head of the HHS Office for Civil Rights
The federal Health and Human Services Department said it is issuing a “notice of violation,” giving California 30 days to comply with a federal law known as the Weldon amendment. That law bars federal health care funding from being provided to states or entities that practice “discrimination” against a health care organization on the basis that it “does not provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or refer for abortions.”
The head of the HHS Office for Civil Rights, Roger Severino, said California is violating that restriction by requiring insurance plans to cover abortions. According to Severino, 28,000 Californians had abortion-free plans prior to the state’s requirements and have now lost that option. The federal government has received complaints from an order of nuns — the Missionary Guadalupanas of the Holy Spirit — as well as a church.
“If states receive federal funds … they cannot discriminate against a health plan that declines to cover abortions,” said Severino.

Federal Law Has Long Barred the Use of Taxpayer Money to Pay for Abortions

Severino did not specify which of many streams of federal health care funds amounting to tens of billions of dollars might be in jeopardy for California. That could include money for community health centers, Medicaid health insurance for low-income people, and basic public health activities like educating parents about vaccines.
“Our goal is to seek compliance, and we are going to give them 30 days, so we do not have to cross that bridge,” said Severino. Other states could also face federal actions.
Federal law has long barred the use of taxpayer money to pay for abortions, except in cases of rape, incest, or to save the life of the woman. That bipartisan consensus could change if a Democrat wins the White House in November, since the Democratic candidates have pledged to take a more assertive stance on abortion rights.
The HHS civil rights office headed by Severino has traditionally mainly handled complaints about privacy violations. Under Trump, it added a new division to handle cases of alleged discrimination on the basis of religious or moral scruples. A federal judge in New York last year struck down a Trump administration rule that could have opened the way for more clinicians and health care workers to refuse to participate in abortions and other procedures because of religious or moral objections.

DON'T MISS

The Pickle Flavor Frenzy and Its Rise in Food Trends

DON'T MISS

Kate Hudson Had a Lifetime to Make a Record. The Result is ‘Glorious,’ Out in May

DON'T MISS

Long-Lost First Model of USS Enterprise from ‘Star Trek’ Boldly Goes Home

DON'T MISS

California Leaders Take Sides in Monumental Supreme Court Case on Homelessness

DON'T MISS

Man Sets Himself on Fire Outside Trump Hush Money Trial Court

DON'T MISS

McDonald’s Ice Cream Machines Are So Unreliable They’re a Meme. They Might Also Be a Climate Solution.

DON'T MISS

Real Estate Experts Talk Fresno’s Economic Future. Are Tough Times Ahead?

DON'T MISS

Unlocking the Secrets to Fresno State’s Superb Baseball Season

DON'T MISS

‘This Is How to Improve Reading Proficiency. We Just Have To Execute It’: FUSD Board President

DON'T MISS

Does Dyer Support (or Endorse) Bredefeld for Supervisor?

UP NEXT

Long-Lost First Model of USS Enterprise from ‘Star Trek’ Boldly Goes Home

UP NEXT

California Leaders Take Sides in Monumental Supreme Court Case on Homelessness

UP NEXT

California Court to Decide on Transgender Ballot Measure Wording

UP NEXT

Rare House Vote Sees Ukraine, Israel Aid Advance as Democrats Join Republicans

UP NEXT

Full Jury and 6 Alternates Seated in Trump’s Hush Money Trial

UP NEXT

Finding an Apartment May Be Easier for California Pet Owners Under New Legislation

UP NEXT

Who Owns Businesses in California? A Lawmaker Wants the Public to Know

UP NEXT

Barbara Corcoran: 1% Interest Rate Drop Will Send Housing Prices ‘Through the Roof’

UP NEXT

California Sets Long-Awaited Drinking Water Limit for ‘Erin Brockovich’ Contaminant

UP NEXT

See the Fully Equipped House Homeless People Built on LA Freeway Strip

California Leaders Take Sides in Monumental Supreme Court Case on Homelessness

23 hours ago

Man Sets Himself on Fire Outside Trump Hush Money Trial Court

1 day ago

McDonald’s Ice Cream Machines Are So Unreliable They’re a Meme. They Might Also Be a Climate Solution.

1 day ago

Real Estate Experts Talk Fresno’s Economic Future. Are Tough Times Ahead?

1 day ago

Unlocking the Secrets to Fresno State’s Superb Baseball Season

2 days ago

‘This Is How to Improve Reading Proficiency. We Just Have To Execute It’: FUSD Board President

2 days ago

Does Dyer Support (or Endorse) Bredefeld for Supervisor?

2 days ago

Get a 3D First Look at Merced’s High-Speed Rail Station Design

2 days ago

California Court to Decide on Transgender Ballot Measure Wording

2 days ago

Rare House Vote Sees Ukraine, Israel Aid Advance as Democrats Join Republicans

2 days ago

The Pickle Flavor Frenzy and Its Rise in Food Trends

You might have noticed that the tangy taste of pickles has taken over more than just the condiment aisle. From pickle-flavored popcorn to pi...

22 hours ago

22 hours ago

The Pickle Flavor Frenzy and Its Rise in Food Trends

22 hours ago

Kate Hudson Had a Lifetime to Make a Record. The Result is ‘Glorious,’ Out in May

22 hours ago

Long-Lost First Model of USS Enterprise from ‘Star Trek’ Boldly Goes Home

23 hours ago

California Leaders Take Sides in Monumental Supreme Court Case on Homelessness

1 day ago

Man Sets Himself on Fire Outside Trump Hush Money Trial Court

1 day ago

McDonald’s Ice Cream Machines Are So Unreliable They’re a Meme. They Might Also Be a Climate Solution.

1 day ago

Real Estate Experts Talk Fresno’s Economic Future. Are Tough Times Ahead?

2 days ago

Unlocking the Secrets to Fresno State’s Superb Baseball Season

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend