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Hyde-Smith joins colleagues in work to...

Hyde-Smith joins colleagues in work to overturn HHS abortion rule

By: Sarah Ulmer - March 24, 2022

Congressional Review Act Directed at Stopping Biden Revival of Obamacare Rule that Violates the Law, Increases Taxpayer-Funded Abortion

U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith and Senator James Lankford introduced a Congressional Review Act resoluton of disproval in an attempt to put a stop to the Biden administration regulation allowing multiple payments for abortion coverage in the taxpayer-funded Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Hyde-Smith and Lankford contend that this violates an unambiguous separate payment requirement in the law.

S.J.Res.43 challenges the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) ruling that repeals the separate billing requirements for abortion services as specifically mandated by Congress in Section 1303 of the ACA.

The ruling eliminated a 2019 Trump-era rule on the billing requirement. It was enacted to align with the clear text of ACA and make sure that taxpayers who were against abortion were not sending their tax dollars to finance the procedures.

The final rule eliminated a 2019 Trump-era rule on the separate billing requirement, which was enacted to align with the clear text of the ACA and ensure taxpayers who oppose abortion do not subsidize health exchange plans that provide abortion coverage.

“The HHS final rule needs to be stopped.  It unlawfully creates a situation in which people, who would never support abortions, might have their hard-earned money used to subsidize plans that provide abortions,” Hyde-Smith said.  “Congress was explicit in requiring separate billing and everyone should be troubled to see the Biden administration completely flout the law with this rule.”

“Health care protects life; abortion takes life,” said Lankford.  “That’s why Congress ensured in the Affordable Care Act that health care and abortion would be billed and paid for separately.  Children of all ages, born or unborn, are blessings that deserve our protection.  We are standing up to this flagrant violation of the clear legal mandate to have separate payments for abortion and health care.  By putting this rule in place, Biden is once again proving his obsession with abortion.  I will continue to do everything I can to stand up to the most pro-abortion president we’ve ever seen and his administration that wants to promote and even increase abortion in our nation.”

20 other Senators cosponsored the legislation.

“The Proposed Rule directly violates the express text, clear meaning, and Congressional intent of Section 1303.  In construing ‘separate’ to mean ‘together,’ the Proposed Rule would illegally allow insurance companies to collect combined payments for elective abortion coverage, rather than separate payments as the law requires.  The Proposed Rule also undermines consumer transparency and makes it harder for consumers to know whether their plan covers abortion, which may lead many to pay for abortions in violation of their consciences or religious beliefs,” the Senators wrote last summer.

Sponsors of the CRA offered by Hyde-Smith and Lankford, include Senators James Risch (R-Idaho), Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), James Inhofe (R-Okla.),  John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.).

U.S. Representative Michael Cloud (R-Texas) is sponsoring a House companion resolution.

About the Author(s)
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Sarah Ulmer

Sarah is a Mississippi native, born and raised in Madison. She is a graduate of Mississippi State University, where she studied Communications, with an emphasis in Broadcasting and Journalism. Sarah’s experience spans multiple mediums, including extensive videography with both at home and overseas, broadcasting daily news, and hosting a live radio show. In 2017, Sarah became a member of the Capitol Press Corp in Mississippi and has faithfully covered the decisions being made by leaders on some of the most important issues facing our state. Email Sarah: