SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (ChurchMilitant.com) - Illinois governor Bruce Rauner is being praised by pro-life groups for his promise to veto an abortion bill that would protect abortion should Roe v. Wade be overturned.
On Wednesday, Illinois Right to Life praised Gov. Rauner, who threatened to veto HB 40, which removes all limits on taxpayer funding of abortions for state employees and Medicaid recipients. The radical abortion bill would also remove the so-called "trigger law," which would automatically make all abortions illegal in the state in the event the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe.
Emily Troscinski, executive director of Illinois Right to Life, commented, "The majority of Illinoisans agree that providing free abortions for any reason for state employees and for those on Medicaid is outrageous."
She added, "We applaud Gov. Rauner for representing the people of our state by opposing this bill that could cost taxpayers millions of dollars by providing free abortions for any reason, including those abortions in which the unborn child can feel the pain of being dismembered."
On the same day, Personal PAC, a pro-abortion group, condemned the governor for his promise to veto HB 40 if the General Assemby passes it. Their first concern was not that the veto would stop the measure from expanding taxpayer funding of abortion, but rather that HB 40 wouldn't remove the state's automatic ban on all abortions if the Supreme Court eventually overturns Roe.
Listing the importance of HB 40 and what would be lost in the event the governor vetoes the bill, the pro-abortion group's spokesman remarked, "Number one: Repeal the trigger law that would prevent abortion from becoming illegal in Illinois when Roe v. Wade is overturned." Their concern is further shown by the speaker not using the term "if" but "when" regarding the overturning of the Supreme Court's ruling.
The necessity of getting rid of the Illinois "trigger provision" was a main reason why the sponsor of HB 40, Democratic Rep. Sara Feigenholtz of Chicago, authored the bill. Feigenholtz believes her bill is necessary because President Donald Trump has promised to nominate U.S. Supreme Court justices who will overturn the landmark abortion decision.
There are 18 other states with laws on their books that could criminalize abortion if Roe is overturned. This fear led Feigenholtz to remark, "We thought we wouldn't have to worry about this stuff. But the new administration has been a wake-up call. I had to stop and say, 'Okay, now what? How do we protect women?'"
Feigenholtz's HB 40 is going to a full vote in the Illinois House of Representatives when lawmakers return from vacation. Legal experts believe, however, that Rauner's promise to veto the bill may dissuade lawmakers from ever passing it.