Pro-life advocates in West Virginia scored a huge win during the midterm elections by passing Amendment 1, according to the West Virginia MetroNews.
Amendment 1 makes the state constitution neutral on abortion.
Specifically, the amendment states, “Nothing in this constitution secures or protects a right to abortion or requires funding of abortion.”
In simpler terms, American taxpayers will no longer have to foot the bill for abortions in West Virginia that are paid for by Medicaid.
The vote passed during the midterms by a 52 percent to 48 percent margin, with 19,803 people voting for the amendment to pass.
The West Virginia Bureau for Medical Services issued a public notice outlining exactly what Amendment 1 entails.
The West Virginia Bureau for Medical Services spelled out the three circumstances in which it will reimburse people for abortions.
“If, on the basis of the physician’s best clinical judgment, there is a medical emergency that so complicates a pregnancy as to necessitate an immediate abortion to avert the death of the mother or for which a delay will create grave peril of irreversible loss of major bodily function or an equivalent injury to the mother, provided that an independent physician concurs with the physician’s clinical judgment.
“If, on the basis of the physician’s best clinical judgment, there is clear clinical medical evidence that the fetus has severe congenital defects or terminal disease or is not expected to be delivered.
“If the individual is a victim of incest or the individual is a victim of rape when the rape is reported to a law enforcement agency.”
Barring those explicitly stated reasons, taxpayers will not have to foot the bill for abortions in West Virginia.
According to state records cited by the MetroNews, there were 1,560 pregnancy terminations last year. There were 1,217 in 2016 and 763 in 2015.
To be clear, the work for pro-life activists is far from over in both West Virginia and the nation as a whole.
On a purely statistical level, Amendment 1 won’t impact a large number of procedures; the MetroNews reports that abortion patients in West Virginia make up just two-tenths of one percent of total Medicaid enrollees.
But, philosophically speaking, this is another victory for the pro-life movement.
More and more public figures are coming out in favor of the pro-life movement and it seems like there’s genuine change happening at a grass-roots level.
These are just baby steps (no pun intended) and there’s still a lot of work to be done. But it’s clearly starting to get done, and that’s good news for anyone who cherishes the sanctity of life.