The State Senate has stopped a discussion on a plan that would make this coverage a requirement.
The Washington state Senate – a coalition dominated by Republicans – has just stopped a discussion for a plan in the state to add a requirement for health insurance companies to provide coverage for abortion.
The procedural motion was voted down after a heated exchange in the chamber.
Some of the Democrats from the Washington Senate had moved to add a health insurance bill before a primary deadline. They said that they had intended to amend the measure so that abortion rules could be included. While Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom, and Republican Senator Steve Litzow both gave their support to this coverage legislation, both of them were also a part of the vote that defeated the effort, quite narrowly.
The health insurance motion was made by Democratic Senator Karen Keiser.
She expressed that most of the coalition didn’t permit a vote on the bill, despite the fact that it looks as though it would have had enough people behind it to be able to pass the chamber. The health insurance bill on abortion has already made its way through the House and the Governor of Washington, Jay Inslee, has also urged the Senate to give its approval, on a number of separate occasions.
There was a terse response to Keiser’s encouragements by Senate Republican Leader Mark Schoesler, stating that Keiser had been “impugning” the other senators. Schoesler, for his part, urged his fellow senators to vote on the motion’s procedural aspect as opposed to the final purpose and intention of the legislation.
Following this action, Republican Senator Don Benton accused the Democrats of attempting to take advantage of the fact that Senator Mike Carrell (R) wasn’t there, as he has been ill. He said that it was “despicable,” and that that this type of effort to move the health insurance bill forward could cause the Senate leaders to request that Carrell return to the chamber, which could be harmful to his condition.
Supporters of the health insurance bill have said that it would help to make certain that abortion coverage is continued in Washington following the implementation of the healthcare reforms in 2014. Opponents, however, say that the coverage is already widely available and that the bill is redundant.