Governor Greg Abbott said the measure known as House Bill 214
would protect abortion opponents from subsidizing the procedure.
Democratic critics decried it as forcing people to buy "rape
Texas, the most-populous Republican-controlled state, has been
at the forefront in enacting abortion restrictions, with many of
its measures followed by other socially conservative states. But
when HB 214 goes into law on Dec. 1, Texas will be the 11th
state to restrict abortion coverage in private insurance plans
written in the state.
"As a firm believer in Texas values, I am proud to sign
legislation that ensures no Texan is ever required to pay for a
procedure that ends the life of an unborn child," Abbott said in
The Republican sponsor of a Senate bill on abortion insurance
restriction, Brandon Creighton, has told local media
supplemental coverage would cost $12 to $80 a year.
House Bill 214, which passed both chambers this month, mostly on
a party-line vote, does not offer exceptions for cases of rape
or incest. Abortion rights groups said they plan a court fight
to prevent it from becoming law.
"By signing HB 214 into law, Governor Abbott has told women and
parents they must pay extra for what is tantamount to 'rape
insurance,'" Democratic Representative Chris Turner, who opposed
the bill, said on Tuesday.
There are 25 states with restrictions on abortion coverage in
plans set up by state exchanges as part of the Affordable Care
Act under former Democratic President Barack Obama, according to
the Guttmacher Institute, which tracks such legislation.
Also on Tuesday, Abbott signed another measure that expands
reporting requirements for complications arising from abortions.
(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Edited by Colleen Jenkins and
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