A budget amendment to stop state funding for abortions passed the House Finance Committee early this month.
Today, the House passed the budget with that anti-abortion amendment intact. There was not a word of protest from the Democrats.
House Democrats, so determined to shut down any amendments that would put them on the record concerning the Alaska Permanent Fund dividend, actually surrendered their platform’s position on state-funded abortions.
The Alaska Democratic Party was livid about the amendment and went after Rep. Kelly Merrick of Eagle River: “Kelly Merrick may want the government’s dirty mitts out of your dairy inspections, but she welcomes government control over your most personal medical and religious decisions. It looks like she and others refuse to learn lessons about what is constitutional and what is not in the State of Alaska. A bill she supports seeks to keep Medicaid funds from paying for medically necessary abortions.”
Oddly, the Democratic Party leaders didn’t go after the maker of the amendment, Rep. Cathy Tilton.
Merrick had testified in committee about how her own birth mother, a teenager, had given her up for adoption and her support for the amendment was a tribute to her parents. She is Catholic, and so being pro-life is certainly a deeply held belief.
But when it came time to stand for abortion, no amendments to withdraw the budget decrement for abortion were offered by Democrats on the House floor.
Instead, they accepted the pro-life Fiscal Year 2020 budget and passed it over to the Senate.