From the St. Louis Beacon:
The anti-abortion provision included in the health-care bill that passed the U.S. House on Saturday is similar to the private insurance restriction that has been in place in Missouri for 26 years.
Still, some leaders on both sides of the state’s longstanding battle over abortion rights foresee possible changes if the federal provision becomes law.
The U.S. House provision in question bars any private insurance coverage of abortion services — except in cases of rape, incest and to save the life of the mother — in policies that are purchased with federal subsidies that would be available to low- and middle-income women and their families. It also bars any public insurance coverage of abortion. (The provision is an extension of the Hyde Amendment, passed in 1976, that bars the use of federal money to pay for abortion.)
An even stricter ban has been in place in Missouri since 1983, when the Legislature approved a bill — signed into law by then-Gov. Christopher “Kit” Bond, R-Mo. — that barred private insurance companies from offering coverage for abortion services, except to save the life of the mother, unless a separate rider was purchased.
That ban was upheld by a federal court in 1992. Missouri is among only a handful of states to impose such restrictions on private insurers. (Click here to see the Guttmacher Institute’s latest study on some states’ limits on private insurers, when it comes to abortions.)
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