Special session continues over Medicaid program covering contraceptives, abortion

Ozarks Politics

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Lawmakers are going through day three of special session in Jefferson City to renew a tax funding Missouri’s Medicaid program.

The debate continues to be if Medicaid should cover some contraceptives like Plan B and if abortion services should receive any state funding.

The end date of July 1 is getting closer, and Governor Mike Parson plans on making budget cuts if things aren’t resolved.

“There are about 75 birth controls and devices that are in the state Medicaid program; there’s 5 of them that we know can destroy human life,” said Senator Paul Wieland (R-Imperial).

The governor called the special session to renew the Federal Reimbursement Allowance Tax (FRA). The holdup is what should be covered under Medicaid.

“Let’s renew $4 billion so ambulances can continue to run in the state of Missouri, so nursing homes can continue to run in the state of Missouri,” said John Rizzo (D), Senate minority leader.

Democrats are fighting for a clean version of the FRA.

“There’s nothing more horrific or personal than a government inserting its big hands into a woman’s womb,” said Senator Jill Schupp (D-Creve Coeur).

Republicans want limits on contraceptives and restrictions on healthcare centers under subsidized healthcare.

“All it does is says in our Medicaid program, and that’s the part taxpayers pay for,” said Wieland. “When we pay for a prescription drug, we don’t want it to kill a human life.”

The goal is for senators to give their final vote sometime soon. If not renewed, the governor said it would cost the state more than $1.4 billion over two years.

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