Bill Status:3/30 Signed by Governor Ducey
- 3/24 Passed House Third Read (35-23-2)
- 3/23 Passed House Committee of the Whole
- 3/22 Passed House Rules Committee (6-3-0)
- 3/16 Passed House Judiciary Committee (4-2-0)
- 2/24 Passed Senate Third Read (18-11-1)
- 2/24 Passed Senate COW
- 2/17 Passed Senate Government Committee (4-2-1)
- 2/1 Introduced by Sen. Biggs
Despite an Arizona law prohibiting the use of taxpayer funds to pay for the performance of an abortion, abortion providers continue to receive taxpayer funding under various federal programs that offset the costs of their abortion business. In keeping with Arizona’s longstanding approach to favor life over abortion, SB 1485 removes all abortion providers as qualifying charities from the state-run State Employee Charitable Campaign.
Arizona has a longstanding public policy against providing taxpayer money or benefits for abortion and to favor life over abortion. The Supreme Court has upheld the rights of states to “make a value judgment favoring childbirth over abortion, and to implement that judgment by the allocation of public funds.”[i] Moreover, this policy also respects the rights of taxpayers to not be forced to subsidize an activity that they find to be morally repugnant.
The Arizona legislature has taken numerous steps in recent years to enact laws and policies in line with these public policy considerations. One example is the law that states if abortion is discussed in a public school classroom or presentation, a preference must be given for childbirth and adoption.[ii] There have also been a number of laws passed seeking to ensure taxpayers are protected from directly or indirectly funding the abortion industry. However, it was recently discovered that Arizona’s State Employees Charitable Campaign (SECC) was facilitating donations to Arizona’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood Arizona, as well as the country’s largest abortion corporation, Planned Parenthood Federation of America.
The SECC is a state-run system for State of Arizona public employees to donate to nonprofit charities through payroll deduction. Because this is a state-run campaign and Arizona taxpayer dollars are involved, in November of last year the SECC Steering Committee rejected the application of Planned Parenthood and its parent company. The rejection of Planned Parenthood was primarily due to the release of undercover videos showing high ranking Planned Parenthood executives admitting to routinely peddling and trafficking the bodies and parts of babies aborted within their clinics. Yet abortion providers previously being included in the SECC highlights yet another way that taxpayer dollars have been indirectly supporting organizations that perform abortions.
In order to ensure no taxpayer dollars support abortion providers and to continue the policy of favoring life over abortion, SB 1485 excludes organizations that perform nonfederally qualified abortions from the SECC. “Nonfederally qualified abortions” are abortions that are not performed because of an act of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother.
- Americans agree that the abortion industry should not be subsidized with tax dollars. Polls consistently show strong majorities of Americans oppose taxpayer funding of abortion. This bill clarifies current law to prohibit public funding for abortion training.
- This bill will not prohibit one abortion. This bill does not prohibit a woman from obtaining an abortion. It simply guarantees that taxpayer dollars are not used to support abortion providers and is in line with Arizona’s longstanding policy of favoring life over abortion.
- A woman’s legal right to choose an abortion does not demand that taxpayers subsidize or pay for an abortion. Courts have repeatedly held that states are not required to provide public funding for elective abortions.
- Americans remain shocked at Planned Parenthood’s horrific actions exposed by the undercover videos. Taxpayer dollars should not be used to facilitate donations to such an organization.
- This bill does not prohibit state employees from donating to Planned Parenthood separately. However, taxpayer dollars will not be used in the facilitation and processing of those dollars to the organization.
Arizona has a longstanding practice of seeking to ensure no taxpayer dollars are used to directly or indirectly subsidize abortions. SB 1485 simply ensures the state-run charitable campaign does not facilitate donations to abortion providers.