That an abortion ban would end up costing taxpayers millions seems like common sense, but now there are numbers to back it up. According to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, the House of Representatives' proposed 20-week ban on abortion could increase Medicaid spending by half a billion dollars over the next decade.
The proposed GOP abortion ban would outlaw all abortions that occur beyond the 20 week mark unless the pregnancy was caused by a rape reported to police (just what abortion needs: cops) or incest, or if the pregnancy threatens the life of the mother.
But childbirth is both more expensive and riskier than abortion, and with abortion off the table, somebody's gotta pay for all those births. As the CBO discovered, in many cases, that somebody is the American taxpayer. From The Hill:
CBO estimates the bill would lead to additional births, 45 percent of which are paid for by Medicaid, the agency said. Based on data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CBO estimates 10,000 abortions annually take place after 20 or more weeks of pregnancy.
It's unclear, however, how many additional births could result from the ban.
"If 90 percent of women who would have sought an abortion 20 weeks or more after fertilization instead were to seek earlier abortions, federal spending would rise by about $100 million over 10 years," CBO said. "If only half of those women were to obtain earlier abortions, then federal spending would rise by nearly $500 million over 10 years."
The 20-week cutoff is especially cruel to women carrying wanted pregnancies who discover that the child they're carrying is suffering from a serious birth defect; 20 weeks is around when many serious problems can first be detected. And the CBO report doesn't include in its cost estimate the astronomical bill attached to medical care for a fatally disabled child between its cruel birth and slow, painful death.
Thank goodness the fiscal conservatives are in charge, amirite?
Silver lining: because of the incurably nonfunctional state of our garbage government, the ban hasn't a snowball's chance in hell of making it past the Senate, much less the President's desk. Lucky us.
Image via Getty.