The Supreme Court of the United States will hear oral arguments Tuesday in the case of Susan B. Anthony List v. Steve Driehaus. SBA List is petitioning the high court to allow its First Amendment challenge to Ohio’s “false statement” law to proceed on the grounds that the statute criminalizes “false” political speech and empowers a state agency to determine what constitutes true or false political speech.
In 2010, the pro-life SBA List states it attempted to erect billboards to educate then-Rep. Steve Driehaus’s (D) constituents about his vote to support taxpayer-funded abortion through his vote for Obamacare.
Ohio’s “false statement” law, however, prevented SBA List from erecting the billboards, and it was threatened with prosecution if it engaged in similar speech about Driehaus or other Ohio candidates.
SBA List also launched a similar, multi-state billboard campaign that exposed Sens. Kay Hagan (D-NC), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), and Mark Pryor (D-AR) for their votes in support of Obamacare and, consequently, taxpayer-funded abortion.
Research from both the Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI) and the Kaiser Family Foundation has revealed that millions of women will gain elective abortion coverage under Obamacare through the affordability subsidies and Medicaid expansion. CLI estimates that up to 111,500 additional abortions per year will be heavily subsidized by American taxpayers.
The CLI states that, since Obamacare’s passage, at least six bills have been introduced in Congress to address different aspects of the law’s abortion-funding mechanisms. Some of these mechanisms include:
The “Abortion Surcharge”
Obamacare bypasses the Hyde amendment and allows taxpayer subsidies to insurance plans that include abortion through the billing of a separate “abortion surcharge.” This accounting gimmick was proposed by then-Senator Ben Nelson (D-NE).
Under the scheme, plans will charge enrollees, regardless of age and gender, a minimum of $1 per month – an “abortion surcharge.” Under HHS rules the existence of the “abortion surcharge” only needs to be disclosed once – in the fine print – during the enrollment process. This surcharge is included without itemization in the monthly premium and is never disclosed again.
In addition, CLI argues it is nearly impossible for exchange users to identify which plans include abortion and which do not when shopping for a plan online. The institute’s research revealed a complete lack of transparency regarding abortion coverage in the Multi-State Exchanges, a situation that was cited in Rep. Chris Smith’s (R-NJ) announcement of the introduction of his bill, the Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act. This bill has been passed by the House and aims to prevent millions of Americans from unknowingly enrolling in health plans that include abortion coverage.
Under the Affordable Care Act, massive amounts of public funds in the form of tax credits – $796 billion in direct spending over 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office – will pay for insurance plans, many, perhaps most of which will include elective abortion. That massively violates the Hyde amendment.
Only one pro-life plan (excludes elective abortion) is required to be established among the “multi-state plans” (MSP) run by the Office of Personnel Management and to be offered in state health exchanges by 2017. The rest of the MSPs, partially subsidized by taxpayers and administered by OPM, may include elective abortion coverage.
With the passage of Obamacare came incentives for states to expand their Medicaid programs for low-income Americans by providing federal funds for raising the income eligibility limits. Slightly more than half of the states have chosen to expand Medicaid, and about two-thirds of these states use tax dollars to pay for elective abortions for their Medicaid populations. Consequently, millions of women in these states will become eligible for taxpayer-funded abortions as a result of Obamacare.
Abortion Drug Mandate
The “preventive services mandate” gives HHS the right to define “preventive services” that must be available cost-free (no copay, no deductible, etc.) to the insured. Under this mandate, HHS has required plans to include abortion-inducing drugs with only the narrowest of exemptions.
“Because Congress and the White House failed to include the Stupak amendment in the ACA as it passed, the law is full of abortion funding loopholes,” said SBA List president Marjorie Dannenfelser in an email statement to Breitbart News. “Our founders braved the threat of the gallows so that we would not have to fear speaking our true convictions. We hope to see our First Amendment rights affirmed by the Court so that we may expose the truth about Obamacare and those who support it in the 2014 elections and beyond.”