Georgia House Speaker Shunned Pro-life Taxpayers

NORCROSS, Ga. April 1, 2013—Georgia Right to Life (GRTL) today accused House Speaker David Ralston of turning his back to pro-life taxpayers by not allowing a vote to end state-funded abortions.

“By refusing to give HB 246 an up or down vote on the last day of the session, Speaker Ralston ignored the wishes of pro-life legislators and the taxpayers they represent,” said GRTL President Dan Becker.

“Once again the Speaker has shown he only talks being pro-life when it meets his political agenda” Becker added. “While he obviously thinks such actions will save his political life, it costs the lives of pre-born children.”

HB 246 was amended in the Senate to prevent state employee health insurance plans from using taxpayer funds to cover abortions. If the House had approved the Senate’s version, the measure would have gone to Governor Deal for his signature.

Governor Deal, who earlier indicated he approved the measure, said late Thursday that he would explore executive and regulatory solutions to prevent the use of tax funds to pay for abortions.

“I am deeply grateful to the Governor for his willingness to find a solution to this long standing problem,” Becker said.  “His willingness to stand up for innocent life should serve as an example to others in Georgia government.”

For his part, Speaker Ralston was quoted as saying: “…some issues are so important they’re entitled to a discussion.”

“It’s a sad commentary on our society, and our Speaker, that saving innocent lives is somehow a matter of discussion, especially in light of the fact that the pre-born are not part of that discussion,” Becker said.

Speaker Ralston also was quoted saying he and other Republicans are “…trying to reduce legislation that unnecessarily angers women, blacks, Hispanics and Asians…”

“Such a comment is a slap in the face to pro-life members of those groups,” Becker said. “It is another example of him listening to only one position.”

The speaker obviously pleased “Women in the Halls”, a project of Planned Parenthood’s Action Fund. The pro-abortion organization thanked its volunteers with a “We Did It” email which pointed out that “no legislation that negatively impacted women’s healthcare was passed in our state this year.” 

In 2011, 366 surgical abortions and 47 medical abortions were performed for state employees.  The total cost was nearly $223,000, the majority of which involved taxpayer funds.

Georgia Right to Life promotes respect and effective legal protection for all innocent human life from its earliest biological beginning through natural death.  GRTL is one of a number of organizations that have adopted Personhood as the most effective pro-life strategy for the 21st century.