The elections are coming soon, but no matter who wins the national elections in November the outcome of the state elections will affect abortion access in many states.
It is easy to find information on pro-choice candidates for the US Senate and the US House of Representatives. Kentucky doesn’t have a US Senate race in 2012, but NARAL and others publish a rundown of the US House of Representatives stances on pro-choice. Planned Parenthood has a Congressional Scorecard page where you can look up candidates by state.
It is harder to find pro-choice candidates in the Kentucky State Senate and Kentucky House of Representatives races. Like many states, they are scarce or non-existent. Ballotpedia provides lists of the Kentucky State Senate and Kentucky House of Representatives races complete with links to the campaign pages of the candidates. Their summaries of the candidate positions do not include the candidates’ stands on abortion access.
In a traditionally Republican state like Kentucky, many of the state Republican incumbents feel they are assured of a victory. Perhaps this is justified. District 45 has voted for Rep. Stan Lee since 2000. He has served in the Kentucky House of Representatives since January 2001.
Why am I paying attention to just Rep. Stan Lee? It isn’t just because according to his campaign website he has been endorsed by the Kentucky Right to Life since his election in 2000. It is because he seems so sure of his re-election, he is already proposing a bill for consideration in January 2013.
RH Reality Check’s Robin Marty reports:
- A policy is already in place in the state of Kentucky ensuring safe abortion care will not be [not be] covered by insurance plans created under the state’s health care exchanges, but just to be absolutely 100 percent and completely clear, one lawmaker wants to pass a bill to make double-triple sure it never happens.
In addition, Roger Alford of Associated Press reports:
- Responding to Republican concerns, the Kentucky Department of Insurance posted a notice on its website earlier this year saying coverage for “elective abortions” won’t be offered. That notice pointed out that doing so “would be a violation of state law and has never been considered.”
Expect this to be the first of many bills proposed in the coming year. 2013 is going to be a rough year again for reproductive health services in many states. Expect contraceptives, preventative health care and abortion services to be under attack. New bills will be introduced just to be “double-triple sure.”