Montana governor signs bill ending taxpayer funding of abortion


Montana Governor Greg Gianforte signed HB 620 into law on Thursday, prohibiting the use of taxpayer dollars to fund Title X family planning programs which include abortion. HB 620 will reroute the money once given to abortion organizations to health care entities such as Federally Qualified Health Centers and rural health clinics that do not participate in abortion.

“Taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to subsidize the dangerous work of abortionists,” Denise Burke, Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel, said in a press release. “HB 620 helps ensure that Montana women and families maintain access to quality, comprehensive healthcare, including family planning services. It does so by prioritizing funding to primary and preventative healthcare providers and ensuring that Title X family planning funding and other healthcare funding streams are kept ‘separate and distinct from abortion-related activities.’ We commend Gov. Gianforte and the Montana Legislature for prioritizing the health of women and their children and for protecting its citizens from being forced to indirectly subsidize abortion businesses.”

The Act had passed the Montana House in March in a unanimous vote. It then passed the Montana Senate in a 30 to 20 vote, with all Democrats and one Republican voting against it.

READ: Montana governor uses public ceremony to sign three major pro-life bills

Whether or not Title X funding should be used to fund abortion-providing businesses has been the topic of debate for years, but was brought into the spotlight when the Trump Administration’s Protect Life Rule went into effect. That policy prohibited abortion providers from receiving Title X funding unless they separated their abortion business from their other health services, both physically and financially. Planned Parenthood announced it would withdraw from the federal program as a result.

After several states sued, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit blocked the Protect Life Rule, while the Ninth Circuit court upheld the regulations. The U.S. Supreme Court agreed in February 2021 to take up the case.

Contrary to what the abortion industry claims, subsidizing abortions leads to an increase in abortions. A survey published by the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute in 2017 showed that women who have taxpayer-funded abortions tend to have more abortions.

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