Archive for Thursday, May 26, 2011

Statehouse Live: Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signs law requiring additional insurance to cover abortion

May 26, 2011, 9:42 a.m. Updated May 26, 2011, 2:10 p.m.

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— Without comment, Gov. Sam Brownback has signed into law a bill that critics say will hurt women who get impregnated after being raped.

And they criticized the House sponsor of the measure, state Rep. Pete DeGraaf, R-Mulvane, for comments he made during debate, which opponents said trivialized the horror of rape.

"This attack on women's rights has to stop," Amber Versola, lobbyist for Kansas NOW, said Thursday.

Brownback, an anti-abortion Republican, has already signed into law several anti-abortion measures passed this year.

The measure he approved Wednesday prohibits insurance companies from offering abortion coverage as part of their general health plans unless the procedure is necessary to save the woman's life. Starting in July, individuals and employers who want abortion coverage would have to buy additional policies that only cover abortion.

In addition, the new law also says that no state or federally administered health-insurance exchange in Kansas established under the federal health care overhaul law can offer coverage for abortions, other than to save a woman's life.

The law's supporters say it will protect employers who oppose abortion rights from having to pay for policies that cover the procedures.

But Versola said women who become pregnant from rape or incest and who want an abortion will have to be able to afford the procedure themselves or have had purchased the additional insurance.

"Women cannot plan to be victims of rape and incest," she said.

Kansas NOW and other groups also are criticizing comments by Rep. DeGraaf.

During debate on May 13, an opponent of the bill, state Rep. Barbara Bollier, R-Mission Hills, noted that abortions would not be covered for cases of rape and incest.

According to a report by The Associated Press, DeGraaf responded, "We do need to plan ahead, don't we, in life?"

Bollier then asked, "And so, women need to plan ahead for issues that they have no control over with pregnancy?"

DeGraaf then said, "I have a spare tire in my car," said DeGraaf. "I also have life insurance. I have a lot of things that I plan ahead for."

Kansas NOW has put out a statement that says: "We have asked women across the nation to join us in telling Rep. DeGraaf that women are `Tired' of legislators who trivialize the horrifying reality of rape."

The group says it will send DeGraaf a model sized "spare" tire for every $5 donation it receives.

The Lawrence Journal-World has attempted to reach DeGraaf by telephone and email. So far, he has not responded.

Comments

Paul R Getto 3 years, 11 months ago

Women are chattel in his bible. Why should Sam care?

kansanjayhawk 3 years, 10 months ago

That is ridiculous. Sam Brownback loves and respects women and it is completely unnecessary to make personal attacks upon him just because you disagree with him politically. I think Sam made the right decision to sign the bill to limit the access of the abortion industry to our insurance premiums

Zazzman 3 years, 10 months ago

This is Pervy Pete reminding you to purchase your Rape Insurance TODAY!

We cover any trimester, pain and suffering; but rely on your health insurance for non-sexual injuries.

So buy your RAPE INSURANCE TODAY! Because the state has forgotten that it exists to secure our rights, not curtail them.

Kim Murphree 3 years, 11 months ago

This Governor does not care about women--I say its time the women of Kansas stopped voting for him and his kind. To force a woman who has been raped or is the victim of incest to have the child is more than unjust--its cruel---and it reflects a character flaw that relegates women to something less then men and children. For those of us who have fought so hard to be recognized as equals, this legislature is tatamount to a bunch of slave holders who think that certain people are property of the state, or religious values of others, or even other members of their families-- this legislation is just another step backwards toward second-class citizenship for women-- we have lost a crucial right over our own bodies---the minute you become pregnant, the state, and all those who are of a certain religious conviction have rights over your decisions---unless of course you are rich, and can afford to go out of country or out of state. If you want to understand the cultist belief system at work, here, read "The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power" Brownback is a follower.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

Should social services have no right to protect your children because they are yours?

Kim Murphree 3 years, 11 months ago

Protect my children? Maybe after they are born.

There again, is the difference...right wing abortion opponents CUT social services for single moms and children that have been born, don't they...so they don't really give a darn about children that are BORN...only making sure the woman MUST have a child whether she is raped or not....

And NO...Social Services should not have ANY rights over a woman's body.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

And what of the child inside your body?

rbwaa 3 years, 11 months ago

and what of the pea inside your brain?

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

Way to contribute to the conversation. First sign of losing an argument is resorting to insults.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

I also assume you meant the pea inside my head. A pea in my brain sounds more like a tumor than insinuating that I have a pea-sized brain, which it sounds like you were attempting to do.

kansanjayhawk 3 years, 10 months ago

He does care about women. It was the previous governor who allowed filthy abortion clinics to carry on their butchery. We need to protect women and children from the abortionist knife.

pocket_of_sunshine 3 years, 10 months ago

What about a woman's freedom to choose what to do with her body? Can she not make a decision for herself? Why do your beliefs trump the person making the decision? If you find abortion morally wrong, don't have one. That's the beauty of freedom of choice.

Cait McKnelly 3 years, 11 months ago

"In addition, the new law also says that no state or federally administered health-insurance exchange in Kansas established under the federal health care overhaul law can offer coverage for abortions, other than to save a woman's life." This right here is going to get the law tanked before SCOTUS. Whether Obamacare is legal or not, the Supreme Court isn't going to put up with a state making laws for selective enforcement of it.

overthemoon 3 years, 11 months ago

Unfortunately cait, with the current court of conservative acitivist judges any lawsuits brought against crazy abortion laws could result in the strikedown of Roe v Wade. No one wants to go there.

kansanjayhawk 3 years, 10 months ago

Well I think more and more of us have gotten the picture of what Roe V.Wade means. Unlimited abortion on demand and prevention of common sense protections for women and children. Roe is on the target list for many of us we want it repealed!

Cait McKnelly 3 years, 11 months ago

And by the way, this is just one more law the state will have to spend money on defending before the Supreme Court. I thought we were broke?

bad_dog 3 years, 11 months ago

"The law's supporters say it will protect employers who oppose abortion rights from having to pay for policies that cover the procedures."

I'm sure there will be a huge drop in group health insurance premiums attributable to this wonderful cost-saving bit of altruism from Gov. Sham. Employers of Kansas take note: the significant increase in your bottom line comes thanks to economic "protection" courtesy of da Guv!

Jan Rolls 3 years, 11 months ago

More nonsense from Sam. Women know in advance when they will be raped so buy the insurance up front? You can't get any stupider than sam. Spending time on nonsense legislation. Where is the first job you have created sam?

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

Forced birth is the punishment women deserve for getting raped. Or being victims of incest.

dogsandcats 3 years, 11 months ago

The company I work for has headquarters in another state. I looked at my insurance documents and it says something to the effect that it is not subject to any state regulations (paraphrase). So is my insurance immune to this law? It's not that I see myself ever having an abortion (as no one plans for them in advance), but it would be nice to know. Anyone know how I can find out?

dogsandcats 3 years, 11 months ago

Oh, and yes, my insurance does cover elective abortion.

pocket_of_sunshine 3 years, 11 months ago

Yes, if your insurance is from another state then the law does not apply to you. Insurance is only regulated by the state of the host plan. If you live in TX and have insurance from a company in NJ, then NJ law applies, not TX. I wonder how many people in different states that have KS insurance are aware of the rights he just took from them.

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

I'm wondering how many insurance companies will decide to migrate to another state to avoid the unnecessary business regulations he imposed on them.

kthxbi 3 years, 11 months ago

ha. I wonder: Does he see the hypocrisy of what he is doing and just doesn’t care because it’s his agenda? Is he completely lacking in self-awareness? Does he think his constituency is so dumb that we can’t see what he’s doing?

kthxbi 3 years, 11 months ago

I didn't vote for him, no. But I'm still a constituent.

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

No, I didn't, but thanks for playing.

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

I'm going to vote on option number three. I think he's pandering to his base. There are a lot of single-issue voters that seem oblivious to any sort of large picture on this one.

Ralph Reed 3 years, 11 months ago

Pregnancies because of incest and/or rape will then become a pre-existing condition and insurance companies won't sell shame insurance to cover a pre-existing condition.


Brownstripe alert. The Guv has killed both education and the arts in Kansas, has done nothing to increase job availability (read as lower unemployment), has sold the state Government and Legislature to a certain family in Wichita, and now has ensured rape and incest victims must pay for abortions out of their own pockets. (It's either that, or plan ahead.)

What's next? How many think he'll go after teaching evolution in school and replace it with "intelligent design" or "creationism?" After all, he doesn't believe in evolution (said so on national TV), so why should we teach it in schools?

As "vocal" said above: "If you want to understand the cultist belief system at work, here, read "The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power" Brownback is a follower."

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

Pragmatically speaking, nobody's going to offer these riders, and women are better off saving up $400 or so to self-finance. They really haven't prevented any abortions, but it's a great distraction from the lack of jobs and gutting of schools, arts, and services for the disabled, now isn't it?

kansanjayhawk 3 years, 10 months ago

I'm really tired of "liberals" who believe that it is O.K. to attack a persons religious beliefs. This makes you an anti-christian bigot and it is a terrible practice in our politics and public discourse.

overthemoon 3 years, 10 months ago

We do not attack. We are responding to the religious right's continual effort to legislate religious beliefs without reason or need. We are simply defending our freedom to not believe in antique myths and legends.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

Topeka — Without comment, Gov. Sam Brownback has signed into law a bill that critics say will hurt women who get impregnated after being raped.

Let's point out what accounts for only 3% of abortions and use that as our banner for pro-choice. What percentage of abortions are to bail out irresponsible individuals who made poor decisions?

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

What percentage of abortion-motive statistics are pulled from an orifice that doesn't birth babies?

Cait McKnelly 3 years, 11 months ago

Pardon me while I wipe the coffee from my monitor screen. You could have just as well gone to Operation rescue or Army of God.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

I suppose the fact that the CDC uses information gathered from Guttmacher gives it no additional creditability.

muttonchops 3 years, 10 months ago

Yea, that was a typo. Thanks for pointing it out.

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

It's not a biased source, though they did have to massage the numbers to come up with their conclusions, so it might not actually be accurate. They didn't ask women what their motive was right after having an abortion. They used data women had voluntarily provided in a separate survey and then inflated the number of abortions to account for underreporting. It's entirely possible and probable that women would simply not report a pregnancy from rape to the questioner.

Should also mention a few of the group's other conclusions. Namely that we need to beef up family planning services to provide better contraception and that abortion should be covered by both private and public insurance.

kthxbi 3 years, 11 months ago

What difference does that make? Abortion is a legal medical procedure. Why is everyone forgetting that? And why are birth control pills not covered by health insurance and Viagra is?

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

What difference does that make? If I'm trying to justify an action by saying it addresses this just cause 3% of the time but this horribly unjust one 97% of the time, I think it makes a difference.

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

So why not allow for the 3% to be covered if it's such a small percentage?

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

I should add: "Just because it's legal, doesn't make it right."

kthxbi 3 years, 11 months ago

Right and Wrong are not the same for everyone. Why should your version of right decide what happens to my body? If your child had, say, kidney failure, no one could force you to donate one of your kidneys. It would be the right thing to do. But no one could make you.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

I don't intend to make decisions for you. I simply have my opinion on how I should lead my life. I will also cast my vote considering the actions and beliefs of who will best represent mine.

kthxbi 3 years, 11 months ago

Fair enough. But I hope this is not the only issue you consider when you cast your ballot.

dogsandcats 3 years, 11 months ago

My insurance covers birth control pills, but not Viagra. Guess I really lucked out. The one good thing my company has done for me.

MyName 3 years, 11 months ago

More to the point, how the heck does this law allow a viable alternative for women? If the only people who would buy the coverage are the ones who "know" they are going to use it, then there is no way a private company could break even selling this insurance. They may as well ban such coverage outright, get the law struck down in court while spending a ton of state money to defend it, and be finished with it.

In conclusion: Lawyers 1 - Taxpayers 0.

ivalueamerica 3 years, 11 months ago

your ignorance is showing where you neglect to mention that the irresponsible decision had to be with BOTH people and yet I see nothing about the father and the number of fathers who pay little or no child support, beat their wives and rape them.

your opinion is disgusting..not just different, but in this case an affront to women and the rules of a civil society.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

Is that right? It's disgusting that I think it's dispicable for women to kill children because they don't want to take responsibility for their actions? I understand there are cases of rape and incest, but the vast majority are neither when a baby is aborted.

This conversation is about abortion. I didn't realize I had to stem my comment into every subject relating to relationships between men and women for it to be valid. Tell you what, why don't you lay out the parameters of this debate, so I can appropriately reject all of your commentary to your satisfaction?

I'm perfectly fine with women doing to their body whatever they want. However, the baby inside your body is not YOUR body. I'm not justified in doing whatever I want to you just because you reside in my house.

"your opinion is disgusting...an affront to women and the rules of a civil society." Tell me, what is civil about killing innocent children? Have an answer besides, "it's my body, I'll do what I want with it?"

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

This legislation doesn't prevent abortion. It just makes it more expensive for the women who get one anyway and more likely they'll do something stupid to endanger their health in order to end an unwanted pregnancy. Guess you win, since you can punish those bad, bad, mothers who already have children and decide they can't afford another one when their birth control fails.

If you want to prevent abortions, invent better birth control and make sure women have free access to it. Invent an artificial uterus. End income inequality.

muttonchops 3 years, 10 months ago

That almost looks like you are blaming the birth control product industry for abortions.

jafs 3 years, 11 months ago

The issue is that a fetus is not equivalent to a child in everybody's view.

My take is that a developing fetus inside a woman's body is a very ambiguous situation - it is neither "just the woman's body" nor is it a separate life until born.

If there's a dividing line at which it becomes more like a separate life, for me that would be the point of viability outside the womb.

But it's a complex and ambiguous situation - those who want to resolve it into simplicity in either direction are mistaken, imho.

muttonchops 3 years, 10 months ago

It's awfully convenient to say that it's not a child as to not weigh on the conscience of the mother who is aborting the child. By this argument, killing a newborn should be much less significant than killing an adult. The adult is more developed and self-sustainable.

Killing a fetus is A-OK because it's not crawling around on your floor pooping it's diaper yet.

ivalueamerica 3 years, 10 months ago

it is not only convenient, it is a legal fact.

jafs 3 years, 10 months ago

I'd like to know how many women you've talked with that have had an abortion, and how many of them made the decision lightly.

I suspect it would be a very small percentage.

jafs 3 years, 10 months ago

I understand your point, and it is clearly true that we all live on a continuum of self-sufficiency, with "no man an island".

But the issue here is separateness.

Both sides simplify in ways I find incorrect:

Left - It's my body Right - It's two separate human lives

I say it's complex, and different along the way from conception to birth, with the point of viability outside the womb a demarcation line.

Before that point, it's more like part of the woman's body, and afterwards it's more like a separate life.

Once born, it's clearly a separate life.

By the way, can you explain how/why conservatives seem to lose their concern once that happens? A real concern for human life would translate into being opposed to the death penalty, anti-war, and pro-education and social services, it seems to me.

Jan Rolls 3 years, 11 months ago

I hope this hits national news and the jerk degraaf gets embarrassed nationwide like that other jerk with the hog comments. Where do these idiots come from? I hope everyone especially women remembers this jerk next election.

gkerr 3 years, 11 months ago

God Bless Sam for signing legislation that will reduce a tiny bit the diisgusting, cruel, and odious procedure that kills innocent weak human life in their most vulnerable condition, that is inside the womb of his or her own mother.

Shame and boos to NOW-- that organization of wretched sad women who live to destroy the lives of so many innocent boys and girls of the next generation to promote a sick and perverse sense of control and freedom that celebrates the mark of Cain. Gkerr

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

Kthxbi I think gkerr's post pretty much answers your question, doesn't it?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 3 years, 11 months ago

You're just here parodying right-wingers, right, gkerr? I mean, you must be. Your posts can't be taken as anything but sick jokes.

Kim Murphree 3 years, 11 months ago

God will not bless Sam for this...He loves his daughters and would not want them to suffer through a pregnancy caused by rape or incest.

gkerr 3 years, 11 months ago

vocal, Sam's actions speak for themselves. Far far fewer than one in a hundred abortions are performed for rape. Most are done for mere birth control or convenience. One hundred percent of Sam's grandchildren aborted are killed brutally. Why in the world of reason and hope would he support the State or public purse as a means of making more convenient a barbaric procedure that is 100% fatal? In case you haven't noticed most of us are against both abortion and rape. Most Americans oppose abortion for all but the life of the mother. We who are against it are not going to back down from the rhetoric of misguided dolt's who would have the citizens pay for a procedure most find ignoble, unjust, and repellent unless the life of the mother is truly at stake. Bullying rhetoric that deceives by misleading statistics and motives and ignores the tragic end result of all abortions is not going to go unchallenged. Gkerr

jafs 3 years, 11 months ago

According to a like-minded poster above, the number is actually more like 3/100.

That would be more than 3x your numbers.

muttonchops 3 years, 10 months ago

I don't presume to like vocal. Do you see me speaking for God anywhere?

notanota 3 years, 11 months ago

Oh don't worry. The rich can always pay out of pocket - they could even before Roe v Wade. Daddy can always make that little "mistake" go away.

grammaddy 3 years, 11 months ago

More slight of hand from the governor's office. Let's keep everybody riled up about the not so important issues while we butcher funding for the important ones. Where are the jobs? What would it take to recall this idiot?

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

Kansas NOW has put out a statement that says: "We have asked women across the nation to join us in telling Rep. DeGraaf that women are `Tired' of legislators who trivialize the horrifying reality of rape."

I'm pretty sure they aren't trivializing rape, but are tired of women who trivialize the horrifying reality of killing children.

pocket_of_sunshine 3 years, 11 months ago

I'm pretty sure comparing a woman who is pregnant from the driect result of rape to a flat tire is trivializing rape. You can prepare for a flat tire, but insinuating that I should also be just as prepared to get raped is horrifying and disgusting.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

I would agree that saying a woman should be prepared for rape is out of line. However, I'm pro-life, so don't have much opinion about health insurance covering abortions.

Also, I'd like to say that I don't think he's comparing the magnitude of a rape with the magnitude of a flat tire. He's simply stating that both are unexpected and should be planned for. That a woman should plan for a rape is something different, however, and I do not agree.

muttonchops 3 years, 11 months ago

I should revise what I said and say that I can't say with any certainty what he was thinking when he said what he said. However, I would expect that someone making the statements he did, would not be saying a flat tire is equally tragic as rape.

kansanjayhawk 3 years, 10 months ago

What about Sebelius and NOW who looked the other way about the filthy conditions at the abortion clinic(s) in Kansas City, Kan. Don't give me excuses that they care for or about women.

Richard Payton 3 years, 11 months ago

This is like Gov. Brownback saying all hospitals should only use rape kits for those individuals that purchase additional insurance. How many sicko rapist will now move to Kansas because of our State policy?

evilpenguin 3 years, 11 months ago

I see an increase in back alley abortions in the near future....

Cait McKnelly 3 years, 11 months ago

Unfortunately, I have to agree. Abortion has been a part of the history of women since the days of the Stone Age. In fact, it wasn't even taboo and didn't become a "moral" issue until the Industrial Revolution ( when they were always looking for more kids to tie to their machinery) and doctors saw midwives (who performed abortions as well as attending births) as competition. Even the Catholic Church went back and forth on it until 1869 when Pius IX issued a papal bull definitively outlawing it. And yet even then the Church would allow exceptions to save the life of the mother until Leo XIII issued a decree in 1886 outlawing abortion in all cases. Given the historical facts, the truth is abortion has always been with us and will always be with us, legal or not. Bottom line, attempting to outlaw it or over regulate it to block it is about as useless as a non-skid hockey puck. Admitting that will save the lives of women. That is it will if women are valued. I don't see that happening, at least not in this state.

evilpenguin 3 years, 11 months ago

Your post was interesting in the information it provided, a lot of that I didn't know so thanks for providing.

Like you say, abortion has long been practiced whether or not it was illegal. The sad truth is that people who are desperate will take desperate measures if safe abortions are purposely made off limits to them. If Sam Brownback is happy to go ahead and play with the lives of the living (as in those who have been born), it really shows up what I'd consider to be a major character flaw.

It's sad that he sees women as just a political tool rather than real people whose lives sometimes do not go to plan. I doubt he'd be quite so quick to pass these laws if it were men who had babies.

muttonchops 3 years, 10 months ago

Murder also happens in back alleys. Should we start legalizing that? Or wait, what are we doing to the babies in an abortion? Ah..."aborting" them....that sounds much less...vile.

dogsandcats 3 years, 11 months ago

"DeGraaf then said, "I have a spare tire in my car," said DeGraaf."

Department of redundancy department?

His insinuation that women need to be prepared for rape is sickening.

verity 3 years, 11 months ago

Petition to be sent to DeGraaf:

http://signon.org/sign/tell-kansas-st...

You can also leave a comment for him---and read the comments that others have made.

kernal 3 years, 11 months ago

As for DeGraaf: sanctimonious, pecksniffian, pietistic ....

Richard Heckler 3 years, 11 months ago

The neoconservative christian fundamentalist party is allowing personal viewpoints to control Kansas Government.

If he would have been honest and listed his actual priorities in his campaign platform this man would not have been elected Governor. Sam Brownback is a dishonest man.

jafs 3 years, 11 months ago

That's an interesting comment.

He clearly lied about a few things up front, including his commitment to "protect" education and social service funding.

I hope that a fairly large number of those that voted for him are unhappy with his current actions - so far only one person on these threads has said they voted for him, but won't do it again.

50YearResident 3 years, 10 months ago

Don't worry about voting for Brownbeck for Govenor next time. My prediction is he will announce for President again. After all, that's why he ran for Govenor. More Govenors are elected president than Senators. He was just pading his resume by running for Kansas Govenor. Anyway, my final statement here, "He won't get my vote, ever"

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