Senate tentatively OKs bill banning insurance coverage of abortions

The Senate on Saturday tentatively approved 20-10 House Bill 214, which would ban insurance coverage of abortions.

The bill was approved along party lines with Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr., D-Brownsville, abstaining.

Under House Bill 214, private and state employee health plans as well as plans in the Affordable Care Act may not include coverage of abortions unless the mother’s life is in danger.

The bill would still allow women to purchase supplemental coverage of the procedure.

“Half of the nation have adopted some measures and policies similar to this. Texas needs to be next,” said Sen. Brandon Creighton, R-Conroe, who presented HB 214.

Democrats were unable to add amendments making exceptions to the bill, including allowing coverage for the procedure when the woman has been sexually assaulted, raped or have been a victim of incest.

“No woman plans to have an abortion … certainly in these two instances, which are the most horrific incidents that a woman has to go through,” said Sen. Sylvia Garcia, D-Houston.

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