Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Abortion advocates Angi Becker Stevens and Emily Kellogg Magner ignorant about the prolife legislation they so vehemently oppose

It never ceases to amaze how little abortion advocates in Michigan know about prolife legislation.

Here's Angi Becker Stevens at RH Reality Check:

Now, in Michigan, many women are also being denied any possibility of private insurance coverage for abortion.

First, Angi seems to think legislation to deny private insurance coverage for abortion in part of HB5711.  She's wrong on a couple counts.  The abortion insurance opt out legislation isn't part of HB5711.  It was originally SB 612 whose language was added into a bill to allow Blue Cross to be a nonprofit insurer.  Second, the bill doesn't "any possibility" of private insurance coverage.  It allows women to buy a separate rider to cover abortion. 
And HB 5711, when signed into law, will place a multitude of burdens on women who are in precarious economic circumstances. Its ban on the tele-medicine prescription of medical abortion will primarily impact women living in rural areas, many of whom are poor and live a great distance from abortion clinics; for these women to incur travel expenses, as well as the necessary time away from work if they're employed, is a great burden that will make abortion significantly more difficult, if not impossible, to obtain.

She claims HB5711's ban on telemed abortions will make abortion "significantly more difficult, if not impossible, to obtain."  Except that no abortion provider in Michigan is currently using telemed abortions so it's rather hard to claim abortion will be more difficult to obtain in the future than now because the state is banning something no abortionist is currently doing. 
And because HB 5711 will also impose a number of costly regulations on abortion clinics and providers, it is likely that even women in many suburban and even urban areas will find themselves without an easily accessible clinic to which to turn. At clinics that do manage to keep their doors open under the new guidelines, it can be expected that abortion costs will be driven even higher.

Angi provides no information on what the costly regulations are.  If preparing a clinic for inspection is such a financial burden for the state's numerous abortion clinics then maybe they shouldn't be in operation.

Here's blogger Emily Kellogg Magner's take:
On November 28th a group of social work students and myself woke up at 3:30 am, drove on unplowed and unsalted roads to talk to our representatives about HB 5711.

We studied and analyzed this 60+ page bill and found that it would regulate women's health centers out of existence, limit abortion access for women in rural areas, prevent private insurance companies from covering any abortion services, give a tax credit for fetuses (but not for children), and it would allow  medical providers to deny any health care service they deem objectionable.

After careful analysis we believed this bill to be nothing but harmful to Michigan women, families, and communities.

There's so much wrong here it's tough to know where to start. 

HB 5711 didn't prevent private insurance companies from covering abortions (again that would be SB 612 which was included in the Blues bill) or give a tax credit for fetuses (that would be HB 5684 and HB 5685) or allow medical providers to deny any health care service they deem objectionable (that would SB 975).  That Emily thinks all this was part of HB5711 seems to indicate Emily never read HB 5711 or carefully analyzed it like she claims.  Surprise!

So if Emily hadn't read HB 5711, why would she claim she had?  So she can act indignant over the fact that her state senator hadn't read the legislation.
Howard Walker looked at us blankly. He glanced at his watch. He fussed with his phone.

We went on to talk specifically about how this bill will harm Michigan women, disproportionately women living in rural areas like ours. After we brought up a few of these points he put up his hands and said that he couldn't really speak to those topics … he had not read the bill.

In front of him was a one paragraph synopsis I assume was from the Right to Life special interest organization who drafted the bill.

Howard Walker had not even bothered to read it.

We spoke with him for 20 minutes, the whole time he was dismissive, misinformed, and rude.

Emily also claims HB 5711 will " regulate women's health centers out of existence."  Wrong again (I'll assume she means abortion clinics since the bill doesn't effect centers which don't provide abortions) as 4 clinics in state are already licensed and meet the regulations. 

Here's a tip for abortion advocates who want to be taken seriously about their opinion on prolife legislation: Actually, take the time to know what you're talking about.  This means reading the legislation and not just Planned Parenthood's talking points. 

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