Georgia abortion bill fuels passion on both sides - CBS46 News

Georgia abortion bill fuels passion on both sides

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ATLANTA (CBS46) -

Gov. Nathan Deal any day could sign into law a bill that would block the state employee health plan from covering abortions as well as forbid insurance bought from the federal healthcare exchange, commonly known as Obamacare, from covering the procedure as well.

Opponents of the legislation said it will restrict many women's reproductive rights.

Supporters say it will prevent money they pay into the insurance system not pay for abortions.

"I think it's a good idea," said Elizabeth Reed, a single mother who opposes abortion.

Reed had her own unplanned teenage pregnancy but chose to put her child up for adoption rather than have an abortion. Reed said she is gratified that the controversial bill will likely become law.

"I don't believe that my tax dollars should go for another woman to end her child's life," Reed said.

The Georgia Department of Community Health last year banned abortion coverage under the state employee plan.

Jackie Rodriguez, who heads the Georgia chapter of the National Organization for Women, said the new bill is redundant.

"It's an extreme measure that is unnecessary,"  Rodriguez said. "It's only going to hurt women."

The bill does not provide an exemption for rape or incest, which Rodriguez said sets a dangerous precedent.

"If you find yourself in the place where you are affected by a pregnancy through rape or incest, you're not going to be allowed to get coverage in Georgia," Rodriguez said.

The Affordable Care Act allows states to ban abortion coverage under private plans sold through healthcare exchanges.

Rodriguez said the Georgia legislation would sharply restrict  women's reproductive rights.

"We are putting ourselves back to 1950," Rodriguez said.

Deal has backed the new state plan and is expected to sign the bill.

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