Nonpartisan, Independent Watchdog Demonstrates Obamacare Uses Taxpayer Dollars for Abortion Coverage

Government Accountability Office Report Adds to the Administration’s Long List of #BrokenPromises

WASHINGTON, DC – A new report prepared by the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) demonstrates that, despite the president’s clear promise, taxpayer dollars are being spent on abortion plans under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Just over five years ago, President Obama stood before a joint session of Congress and declared to the American people, “under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions, and federal conscience laws will remain in place.” But the GAO report confirms that the administration is failing to uphold its promise. The independent watchdog found that the health law’s accounting gimmick is not being enforced and more than one thousand plans available on the health insurance exchanges cover abortion on demand. Additionally, the GAO found that information about abortion coverage for plans available on the exchanges is not uniformly available to consumers. 

Republican congressional leaders requested the watchdog report last December. The House of Representatives in January approved H.R. 7, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act. This is one of more than 350 bills that remains #StuckInTheSenate.

In conjunction with the report’s release, GAO also detailed the instances where the Obamacare accounting gimmicks are not being followed in a letter to the administration.  

“Today’s GAO report confirms that under the president’s health care law, abortions are being paid for with taxpayer funds by more than 1,000 exchange plans across the country.  This information has been hidden from the American public for years by the Obama Administration, which repeatedly denied congressional requests for its public release," said Speaker John Boehner (R-OH). "Common-sense restrictions like the Hyde Amendment have traditionally enjoyed bipartisan support in Congress, and Americans have for decades overwhelmingly rejected the idea of federal funding for abortion. Earlier this year the House passed H.R. 7, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, on a bipartisan basis to prohibit federal funding for such purpose under ObamaCare. Sadly, this legislation has suffered the same fate to date as the dozens of bills passed by the House that would help to create jobs and grow our economy: it has been gathering dust in Senator Reid’s dysfunctional, do-nothing Senate. This GAO report underscores the need for the Senate to do its job and pass this common-sense legislation.”

“When jamming the law through Congress, the administration and Washington Democrats insisted that Obamacare would not fund abortions,” said House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). “The harsh and sad reality that today’s Government Accountability Office report confirmed is that there is little the administration is doing to live up to that promise, given that taxpayer subsidies are paying for plans that cover abortion. I thank the committee and the pro-life caucus for their persistent work in exposing the administration’s broken promises, and today’s report should be another clarion call – we must repeal this broken law and replace it with a step-by step, patient-centered alternative that ensures that taxpayer dollars are not used to pay for abortions.” 

"Many of us argued at the time Obamacare passed that it would funnel taxpayer dollars to elective abortions, despite President Obama’s repeated broken promises to the contrary. This independent report validates our claims and proves that yet another Obamacare promise has been broken,” said House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA). "The administration should be held accountable for this, the most recent in a string of Obamacare broken promises to the American people. Earlier this year, the House passed bipartisan legislation to codify the Hyde Amendment, prohibiting taxpayer funding for abortion. I urge the Senate to do its job and pass the House’s bipartisan legislation that will protect the lives of mothers and their children."

“The American people deserve an administration committed to carrying out the law – not usurping it. Disappointingly, today’s report marks one more example of the president’s disregard for the law and for hard-earned taxpayer dollars,” said House Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA). “For decades, both Republicans and Democrats have believed that taxpayer dollars should not fund elective abortion. Yet this report highlights Obamacare’s unlawful dismissal of these bipartisan measures. We must come together to protect hardworking taxpayers across the country, which is why I was proud to support bipartisan legislation that corrects this abuse – and I am hopeful the Senate will take up this important legislation. We must put an end to this unlawful and unacceptable executive overreach.”

“Once again, they said one thing but did another, and it is up to Congress to pick up the pieces,” said Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI). “The independent watchdog’s report confirms what we have suspected all along. The House has already acted to protect the public from the president’s broken promise, and it is time for the Senate to swiftly approve our bipartisan solution.”

“As the health law’s broken promises continue to pile up, the administration’s integrity has diminished,” said Health Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-PA). “Lost plans, lost access to doctors, and rising premiums are now joined with the fact that taxpayer dollars are in fact being used to fund abortion. The Senate has no excuse for not acting on the House-passed solution and today’s report only adds to the urgency.”

“The administration’s record of broken promises and rejection of transparency continues,” said full committee Vice Chairman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN). “The president’s words could not have been clearer – taxpayer dollars would not be used to pay for abortion – but we now see that this, like so many other promises about this law, has not held true. Sadly, the White House’s workaround was just another accounting gimmick that the administration likely never intended to enforce.” 

"American taxpayers don't want their money to be used to pay for abortions, but according to the GAO, the administration has ignored their wishes. GAO's report also shows the law is not being enforced. Another Affordable Care Act broken promise from the president," said Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Tim Murphy (R-PA).

“It's disappointing that this administration can't - or won't - give Congress and the American people straight answers about Obamacare. Consumers have asked, and quite frankly deserve, to know the details of policies they're now forced to purchase,” said Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL).

“In an 11th hour ploy to garner a remnant of pro-life congressional Democrats absolutely needed for passage of ObamaCare, the president issued an executive order on March 24, 2010 that said: ‘the Act maintains current Hyde Amendment restrictions governing abortion policy and extends those restrictions to newly created health insurance exchanges,’” said Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), co-chairman of the Bipartisan Congressional Pro-Life Caucus. “It turns out that those ironclad promises made by the president himself are absolutely untrue.”

Read the complete report online here.