The defunding of abortion providers is constitutionally permissible in the United States

The United States Supreme Court has already decided that taxpayer funding of abortion is not required under the United States Constitution in the Maher v. Roe, Williams v. Zbaraz, Harris v. McRae, Webster v. Reproductive Health Services, and Rust v. Sullivan decisions. In addition, Article I, Section 9 of the United States Constitution prohibits the United States Treasury from funding abortion providers unless such funding is in accordance with appropriations made by the United States Congress.

Here are the conclusions that the United States Supreme Court arrived at with respect to taxpayer funding of abortion in the United States:

  • “The Equal Protection Clause does not require a State participating in the Medicaid program to pay the expenses incident to nontherapeutic abortions for indigent women simply because it has made a policy choice to pay expenses incident to childbirth” (Maher v. Roe).
  • “Financial need alone does not identify a suspect class for purposes of equal protection analysis” (Maher v. Roe).
  • “A State is not required to show a compelling interest for its policy choice to favor normal childbirth” (Maher v. Roe).
  • “Since it is not unreasonable for a State to insist upon a prior showing of medical necessity to insure that its money is being spent only for authorized purposes, the District Court erred in invalidating the requirements of prior written request by the pregnant woman and prior authorization by the Department of Social Services for abortions” (Maher v. Roe).
  • “The funding restrictions of the Hyde Amendment do not impinge on the ‘liberty’ protected by the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment held in Roe v. Wade, 410 U. S. 113, 168, to include the freedom of a woman to decide whether to terminate a pregnancy” (Harris v. McRae).
  • “Although Congress has opted to subsidize medically necessary services generally, but not certain medically necessary abortions, the fact remains that the Hyde Amendment leaves an indigent woman with at least the same range of choice in deciding whether to obtain a medically necessary abortion as she would have had if Congress had chosen to subsidize no health care costs at all” (Harris v. McRae).
  • “The Hyde Amendment does not violate the equal protection component of the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment” (Harris v. McRae).
  • “The regulations do not violate a woman’s Fifth Amendment right to choose whether to terminate her pregnancy. The Government has no constitutional duty to subsidize an activity merely because it is constitutionally protected and may validly choose to allocate public funds for medical services relating to childbirth but not to abortion” (Rust v. Sullivan).

The United States Senate should pass the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2015 (S. 582), because the United States Supreme Court has already decided that the taxpayer defunding of abortion being proposed under this act is constitutionally permissible as a result of the Harris v. McRae and Rust v. Sullivan decisions. In addition, Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers should not receive taxpayer funding because these providers are primarily in the business of performing abortions, because abortion is the primary source of revenue for these providers, because the business model of Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers is fundamentally different from healthcare providers who are not in the business of performing abortions, and because the majority of abortions that are performed at Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers are clearly medically unnecessary to begin with.

While prohibitions on taxpayer funding of abortion providers have previously been determined to be constitutional by the United States Supreme Court, the abortion industry might attempt to get these laws declared unconstitutional through the federal courts on the grounds that these laws would lead to the closure of many abortion clinics in the United States and on the grounds that many of the abortion-seeking women would be deprived of the ability to obtain a legal abortion in the United States as a result of the prohibition of taxpayer funding of abortion. Additionally, these abortion providers might make the argument that these laws were enacted as a means to prohibit abortion in the United States, despite the fact that these laws do not prohibit physicians from performing otherwise legal abortions that were not paid for with taxpayer money. Finally, the United States Supreme Court should continue to uphold laws that prohibit taxpayer funding of abortion, even in the face of attempts to get such laws declared unconstitutional by the abortion industry, because upholding these laws would respect established legal precedent on the issue of taxpayer funding of abortion, because the government has various legitimate interests that justify prohibiting the taxpayer funding of abortion, and because the United States Treasury has an obligation under Article I, Section 9 of the United States Constitution to not fund abortion providers unless permitted through appropriations enacted by law.


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