Tax-funded abortions rise to highest level ever in 2015
ST. PAUL — After 20 years of taxpayer-funded abortions, Minnesotans are paying for more abortions than ever before. Taxpayers have funded more than 77,000 abortions at a cost of $23.5 million, according to a just-released report from the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS). Taxpayer-funded abortions numbered more than 4,200 in Minnesota in 2015—the largest annual number ever—and nearly all of those abortions were elective. Taxpayers are forced to fund abortions due to a successful 1995 challenge to Minnesota's law which prohibited public funding of most abortions. Since then, abortion advocates have marketed taxpayer-funded abortions to low-income women. Taxpayers now pay for 42.8 percent of all abortions (up from 39 percent in 2014), the highest percentage ever. "'Free' abortions funded by taxpayers represent a growth area for Planned Parenthood and the state’s abortion industry," said Scott Fischbach, Executive Director of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL). "It is time to end this exploitation of low-income women and their unborn children." Minnesota taxpayers have been required to fund elective abortions since the Minnesota Supreme Court's 1995 Doe v. Gomez ruling. In that decision, the Court created a state "right" to abortion on demand and obligated all taxpayers to fund abortions, including purely elective procedures. Since the Doe v. Gomez ruling, taxpayers have paid $23,564,678 for a total of 77,389 abortion procedure claims. Taxpayers' 2015 portion (the latest available) was $1,045,633 for 4,218 abortions. Prior to the court decision, taxpayers were charged about $7,000 per year for about two dozen abortions in cases of rape and incest and to save the life of the mother. MCCL helped to pass a ban on taxpayer funded abortion during the 2011 legislative session; it was vetoed by Gov. Mark Dayton. Similar legislation (S.F. 702, H.F. 809) has been approved this year by Minnesota Senate and House of Representatives committees. The measure would end the forced funding by taxpayers of this mistreatment of poor women and the killing of unborn children. Planned Parenthood's taxpayer funded abortion claims rose 14 percent in 2015, after rising 45 percent in 2012 and 40 percent in 2013. Planned Parenthood increased its revenues from taxpayer funded abortions in 2015 by 15 percent to $471,463; it filed claims for 2,054 taxpayer funded abortions, which represented 49 percent of those claims that year. Whole Woman's Health filed 959 abortion claims, the second most. The abortion business has paid several large fines for breaking the law in Texas. Legislation currently before Minnesota lawmakers (S.F. 704, H.F. 812) would require the state's five surgical abortion facilities to be licensed and inspected by the Department of Health as outpatient surgical centers. None is licensed or inspected by the state. "Polls continue to show that most Minnesotans and most Americans oppose taxpayer funded abortions, yet they continue to be forced to pay for them," MCCL's Fischbach said.