In a massive move to protect the unborn, President Donald Trump announced he will withhold 200 million dollars in Medicaid funding from the state of California for the first quarter of 2021 due to a state mandate that health care insurance providers offer coverage for elective abortion and will continue withholding an additional 200 million dollars for each quarter the state fails to repeal the mandate.
“We’re taking enforcement action against the state of California for imposing universal abortion coverage mandates on health insurance in the state,” Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told reporters on Wednesday. “We have informed California that this policy clearly violates federal conscience laws but the state refuses to fix the issue and comply. Accordingly, we plan to withhold $200 million in federal Medicaid funds from the state in the first quarter of 2021. And unless California amends its policies we will seek to withhold an additional $200 million every quarter until it complies.”
HHS’ Office for Civil Rights previously issued a warning to the state over its 2014 mandate that specifically required employers and private insurance plans pay for abortions and threatened to cut funding. The Department of Health and Human Services found the requirement to be in violation of the Weldon Amendment, a federal anti-discrimination law that protects insurers from being required to pay for abortions.
Naturally, the office of governor Gavin Newsom criticized the move as an attempt “to score cheap political points,” promising in an email comment that the state “will continue to stand up for reproductive health and push back against this extreme presidential overreach.”
In the waning days of the most unabashedly pro-life administration in modern American history, this move will invariably go down as one of President Trump’s highlights in the pro-life fight. As the administration cut sixty million dollars in taxpayer funding from Planned Parenthood and signed an executive order that guaranteed infants born alive, even if they are born during an abortion, will receive equal medical care, Trump has never been shy to protect the lives of the unborn.