Contact: Jeff Sagnip, 202-225-3765, chrissmith.house.gov
WASHINGTON, Jan. 22, 2015 /Standard Newswire/ -- U.S. Rep. Chris Smith, co-chair of the Bipartisan Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, applauded today's overwhelming passage of legislation, No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2015 (HR 7) which will permanently prohibit federal funding for abortion and funding for any insurance plan that includes abortion on demand.
"The American people strongly oppose taxpayer funding for abortion," Smith said during the floor debate on the bill that coincided with the arrival of tens of thousands of prolife Americans in Washington for the annual March for Life.
"In the most recent polling, a Marist poll release yesterday, 68% of respondents oppose using taxpayer funding for abortion – including 69 percent of women and 71 percent of millennials. Even 49 percent-- nearly a majority -- of respondents who identified themselves as 'pro-choice' oppose the use of taxpayer funding.
"HR 7 reflects the overwhelming sentiment of the American people and will accomplish three important goals,” said Smith who coauthored the legislation with Democrat Rep. Dan Lipinski of Illinois.
- "The bill will make the Hyde Amendment and other current abortion funding prohibitions permanent.
- It also ensures that Affordable Care Act—Obamacare—faithfully conforms with the Hyde Amendment as promised by the President.
- And HR 7 will also provide full disclosure, transparency and the prominent display of the extent to which any health insurance plan on the exchange funds abortion—while we work to repeal the disastrous program," Smith said.
"On September 9, 2009 President Obama stood 6 feet from where I stand now and told lawmakers and the American public in a specially called joint session of Congress on healthcare reform that 'under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortion.'
"Turns out that those ironclad promises made by the President himself are absolutely untrue," Smith declared while pointing to a recent government report that disproves the President's assertion.
"An extensive audit by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released in September of last year found that 1,036 Obamacare exchange plans covered elective abortion. GAO also found that separate billing of the abortion surcharge – required by the Act – is not being enforced by the administration and the abortion-funding premium is again being illegally rolled into the total plan cost," Smith said.
"Health care consumers are therefore buying health insurance with little or no knowledge that they are purchasing abortion subsidizing plans," he said.
Smith also said that the bill will save lives and help spare women and children from the horrors of abortion.
"We live in an age of ultrasound imaging—the ultimate window to the womb and the child who resides there. We are in the midst of a fetal health care revolution, an explosion of benign interventions designed to diagnose, treat and cure the precious lives of these youngest patients.
"We also know unborn children, at least by 20 weeks, or about 6 months, feel pain while being aborted," Smith added.
"Children, including children with disabilities deserve better treatment than pain-filled dismemberment.
"By some estimates, including by pro-abortion advocates, the Hyde Amendment has saved the lives over a million children because 1 in 4 women who would have procured an abortion don't go through with it if public funding isn't available.
"HR 7 will help save lives," he said.
The bill includes exceptions in the cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother, will save lives and help spare women and children from the horrors of abortion.
Smith, who is a cosponsor of the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, HR 36, was unphased by barbs tossed on the House floor by those who said his legislation was moved because it is less controversial than the pain capable bill which will ban abortions after 20 weeks.
"The Pain Capable bill has been delayed to finalize language, but I look forward to its passage in the immediate future. Both bills seek to uphold the sanctity of human life and both have the support of the majority of American people. I am absolutely confident that this House will consider and pass the critical Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act in the next few weeks."