The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Dept. of Bad Analogies

Posted on | May 24, 2011 | 4 Comments

“Last Friday, Kansas legislators approved a ban on insurance companies offering abortion coverage as part of their general health plans.”

This is in itself problematic. I’m pro-life, but I don’t like the idea of government bossing around insurance companies, telling them who and what they should or should not cover. And this description of the rationale behind the bill seems confusing:

If the bill becomes law as expected, starting in July, individuals and employers who want abortion coverage would have to buy supplemental policies that cover only abortion. Supporters of the bill argue that it will protect employers who oppose abortion rights from having to pay for policies that cover the procedures.

But don’t different companies offer different policies? I mean, if an employer didn’t want to provide abortion coverage, couldn’t the employer shop around to find a company that offered the kind of coverage he wanted? There must be some background to this story I don’t understand.

Whatever the policy logic of this law, it doesn’t help the pro-life cause to have it defended by idiots:

Rep. Barbara Bollier, a Mission Hills Republican who supports abortion rights, questioned whether women would buy abortion-only policies long before they have crisis or unwanted pregnancies or are rape victims.
During the House’s debate, Rep. Pete DeGraaf, a Mulvane Republican who supports the bill, told her: “We do need to plan ahead, don’t we, in life?”
Bollier asked him, “And so women need to plan ahead for issues that they have no control over with a pregnancy?”
DeGraaf drew groans of protest from some House members when he responded, “I have spare tire on my car.”
“I also have life insurance,” he added. “I have a lot of things that I plan ahead for.”

“Groans of protest,” indeed. A much better argument: The fee for a first-trimester abortion isn’t so steep as to be prohibitive to the uninsured. It is a relatively inexpensive procedure. This is also a valid argument against taxpayer subsidies for abortion providers like Planned Parenthood: Even if you are enthusiastically “pro-choice,” there is no compelling economic need that justifies such subsidies.

Exactly why the Kansas legislature felt the need to interfere this way with the insurance companies, I don’t know. But spare us the spare-tire analogies.


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