Oregon has just passed the most progressive abortion bill so far, requiring state insurers to provide free abortions for all, including illegal immigrants
On Tuesday, Kate Brown, a Democrat, signed the historic health bill after it was approved by the Legislature in July. It requires all insurance companies in Oregon to cover reproductive procedures, on taxpayers’ dime.
The bill takes effect immediately and it allocates $500,000 for abortions for all estimated 22,873 women who, under the Oregon health plan, are eligible. Furthermore, it includes abortions for immigrants who, otherwise, are ineligible under the state’s Medicaid program.
As expected, opponents argued that the bill force those who morally object to abortions to support some of the costs. Moreover, they predicted that lawsuits will quickly come into discussion, arguing that the law is not in accordance with the Weldon Amendment, which is a 2004 congressional provision that forbids Health and Human Services funds for those states that discriminate against health care providers that say no to covering abortions.
Providence Health Care, which is a nonprofit Catholic health care provider that is the only insurer in Oregon that does not cover abortions, will have all its expenses reimbursed by the state.