An effort by Senate President Wilton Simpson to provide $2 million in the budget for low-income women to access long-acting reversible contraception was vetoed by Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Simpson, who identifies as a pro-life Republican, called LARC a “healthy part” of a pro-life agenda and said all women should be able to access it, regardless of income.
It is the second time Simpson has included funding for long-acting reversible contraception in the budget. And it is the second time DeSantis vetoed it.
DeSantis first vetoed LARC funding from the current Fiscal Year 2021-22 state budget drafted during the 2021 Legislative Session, when the Florida Senate killed efforts to prevent women from having abortions due to fetal anomalies.
The legislation would have prohibited a medical professional from performing an abortion if the “physician performing the termination of pregnancy knows, or should know, that the pregnant woman is seeking the termination of pregnancy solely on the basis of a prenatal diagnosis, test, or screening indicating a disability or the potential for a disability in the fetus.”
The Legislature this year passed HB 5, which makes it illegal for a woman to have an abortion after 15 weeks of gestation. Simpson told reporters in the spring he was hopeful the Governor would authorize the birth control spending given the passage of HB 5.
“I think when you consider we are pro-life, how many lives that may be saved by LARC, and remember it’s the people that cannot afford it is what this money’s for. And about half of our population may not (be able to) afford these devices, and so I think that is certainly a tool that should be in the toolbox,” Simpson said. “And I am hoping that the Governor may be satisfied that we did both this year,” Simpson said.
There are different long-acting reversible contraceptives. LARCs don’t need to be taken every day and, depending on the type of LARC, can be effective for anywhere between two months and 10 years. Examples of LARCs include injections, intrauterine contraceptive devices or an intrauterine contraceptive device that releases the progesterone hormone into the womb.
But LARC is expensive, making it difficult for uninsured women or who are not covered by Medicaid. Florida is one of 12 states that has not expanded access to Medicaid for low-income, uninsured adults.
The Florida Catholic Conference sent DeSantis letters in 2021 and 2022 requesting he veto the funding.
Immediate attempts Thursday night to get a comment from the Florida Catholic Conference were unsuccessful.
Simpson, who was adopted from the foster care system when he was 6 years old, repeatedly stressed during the 2022 Session that access to birth control increases opportunities for women and that it should be accessible to all women, not just those who are insured or covered by Medicaid.
“I use the word ‘opportunity’ a lot. If you give those young women an opportunity not to get pregnant, then they have an opportunity to go to college or start a career. Then they are 23, 24, 25 years old and less likely to fall into poverty at that point,” Simpson told reporters in January at the start of the 2022 Legislative Session.
June 2, 2022 at 10:24 pm
Should the Catholic Conference send a letter to the Governor to legitimize Pedophila. Being a Catholic, religious organization should stay out of politics.
June 3, 2022 at 7:12 am
Not normally a Wilton fan, but he is beyond right on this one. And DeSantis has again proven himself to be a misogynistic dictator who seeks to control women’s , trans youth, and just plain old poor people’s health care. No care for you! .
I have lived without health care at different periods of my life, and it makes no sense at all not to keep people healthy. Especially considering the long game and increased costs that come when you cant see a doctor for preventative care. Florida had the opportunity for federal Medicaid funds(which come from us taxpayers) and DeSantis turned it down. just let them die, right Ronnie? And keep those gals barefoot and pregnant. What era are we living in anyway? Don’t want abortion, but no birth control to prevent unwanted pregnancies ???VOTE Blue!!
Florida Voice for the Unborn
June 3, 2022 at 8:48 am
Thank you, Governor DeSantis! Many LARCs act as abortifacients, meaning that they prevent the implantation of a human embryo in his or her mother’s womb. As to LARCs that do not act as abortifacients, taxpayer money should not go toward paying for anyone’s “contraception.” Period! Shame on “pro-life” Senate President Wilton Simpson for advocating for this $2 million appropriation again after the Governor had previously rejected it in 2021!
June 3, 2022 at 12:31 pm
You should sign in as “Florida Voice for the Unconceived”, a totally bogus concept and position; much less one that the government has any right to interfere with.
June 3, 2022 at 4:40 pm
These types of contraceptives listed ARE abortifacients, because they kill the embryo (…embryo in Latin: “little one”) after they are conceived. As you liberals like to say “follow the science.”
The bill doesn’t “interfere” with anything. The FL taxpayers should not pay for someone’s contraceptives. The Governor is right.
June 3, 2022 at 9:10 am
If the proponents of abolishing birth control don’t understand that most of us would oppose them and thereby give the far left a victory, then we’re in for a rough ride. Calling all birth control “abortifacients” is an untenable position. Don’t feed into the left’s propaganda that conservatives want to abolish all birth control. We’ll lose that battle.
Florida Voice for the Unborn
June 3, 2022 at 9:24 am
Charlotte – please read our comment again and stop with the scare tactics! Why should taxpayer money go toward funding anyone’s contraception? Contraception has been widely available for decades – and yet the abortion rate remains sky high, especially here in Florida. When contraception fails (and it often does), then women turn to abortion as their “back-up” option. As our executive director correctly stated during public testimony before a Florida Senate committee earlier this year, “The contraceptive mentality is what fuels the blood-thirsty abortion industry in our country.” Please do some research before mindlessly commenting on topics you know very little about! Thank you!
June 7, 2022 at 11:15 am
Unfortunately, it’s not Leftist propaganda. These people are not “conservatives”, but radical religious extremists. Just take a look at the comment by “Florida Voice for the Unborn”‘, where he/she talks about how “The contraceptive mentality” is fueling abortion. Contraceptive mentality is a religious concept held by Ron Desantis’ own religion. Why is the Catholic Church writing government law? Where is Separation of Church and State? Ron doesn’t respect that right. And he doesn’t respect families’ rights to use birth control to decide when and if to have children. Desantis is denying women, girls, and families Long Acting Reversible Contraceptives (LARC), that come very close to completely eliminating the risk of an unplanned pregnancy. Sadly, there are many, many politicians who have stated that they do plan to pass laws banning all birth control. There are most certainly additional state and federal Congress members who are not yet saying that out loud because, as you point out, they fear it will hurt their chances of being elected.
It’s your choice: what’s more important to you? Keeping your own rights (like birth control, freedom of/from religion), or taking away other people’s rights.
June 3, 2022 at 4:24 pm
So should the state pay for your deodorant too? Shampoo? Diapers?
This was ridiculous legislation and why someone like Simpson would never make it out of an R gubernatorial primary which rumor has he has his eye on in the future.
We love your integrity and fearless principled leadership in a culture which is fast losing any sense of decency.
June 4, 2022 at 12:12 pm
“losing any sense of decency.”
Decency? You would refuse a baby diapers? That’s decency to you?
How bitter and hateful.
June 6, 2022 at 10:04 am
I am a Florida native born and Bred and I support our GREAT Governor RON DESANTIS! <3
Apoyo a nuestro gobernador!
June 5, 2022 at 9:03 pm
The governor is a douche in a man suit who deserves nothing but derision for his misogyny. If you support him you are obviously neither a lady nor a collegiate person.
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