Rauner signs controversial abortion bill

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CHICAGO (WAND) – Governor Bruce Rauner has signed the controversial abortion bill on Thursday afternoon in Chicago.

Rauner signed House Bill 40, saying “abortion is a very emotional issue with passionate opinions on both sides. I sincerely respect those who believe abortion is morally wrong. They are good people motivated by principle.”

The bill will expand taxpayer subsidized abortions for women covered by Medicaid and state employee insurance. In April Rauner vowed to veto the bill but last week he said he was undecided.

During the signing Rauner said he always supported that women can make a choice.

“I have always said, I believe a woman should have the right to make that choice herself and I do not believe that choice should be determined by income. I do not think it’s fair to deny poor women the choice that wealthy women have. That is why I am signing HB40.”

The bill did not reach Rauner's desk until Monday.

The ACLU released the following statement on the signing of HB 40. “The ACLU enthusiastically applauds Governor Rauner for signing HB 40 and, in doing so, helping women throughout the entire State of Illinois. We applaud him for taking time to listen to the stories of women who have been denied access to basic health care, including abortion care, simply because they receive their insurance from the State of Illinois. This deliberative, thoughtful process – and learning about the experiences of women struggling to get by – clearly affected the Governor’s decision.

Because of the Governor’s action today, women across Illinois are empowered to make their own health care and life choices without interference from politicians. We are pleased the Governor has stood with these women and made the right decision for our state.”

Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti also released a statement on the signing of this bill.  As a pro-life Republican, I disagree with the Governor’s decision to sign HB 40. I wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for a 15-year-old refugee who chose to have me and keep me.  I realize this bill is a political ploy to divide the people of Illinois. While I disagree with the Governor on this, we must focus on our areas of agreement – enacting real reforms we need to turn Illinois around.”

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