EXCLUSIVE: Heritage Action Backs Senators’ Move To Block VA From Funding Abortions

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

James Lynch Investigative Reporter
Font Size:

Conservative activist group Heritage Action is endorsing Republican Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville’s resolution to block the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) from providing abortions to retired veterans.

Tuberville’s Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution of disapproval would block the VA’s interim final rule (IFR), effective Sept. 9, 2022, allowing veterans to receive abortions and abortion counseling.

Heritage Action is including the resolution as a “key vote” on its conservative scorecard, which measures how conservative members of Congress are. (RELATED: In The Post-Roe Landscape, Here’s Where Republicans And Democrats Stand On Abortion)

“President Biden’s illegal rule provides taxpayer funded abortions to veterans, their spouses, and their dependents, all while taking away actual health care resources from veterans and violating the Dobbs decision,” Heritage Action Executive Director Jessica Anderson told the Daily Caller.

“Biden is catering to progressive activists by bypassing Congress and defying state laws in order to force a radical pro-abortion agenda on Americans. Heritage Action is key voting in support of this resolution because Congress needs to use the Congressional Review Act to hold this administration accountable and protect the unborn from Biden’s policies.”

The VA IFR amends its medical regulations to permit abortion counseling and create exceptions to the exclusion of abortion from its medical benefits package. It also expands exceptions to the exclusion of abortions for beneficiaries of the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA).

The VA is prohibited from providing abortions as a “medical service” under the Veterans Health Care Act of 1992 (VHCA). Nonetheless, the IFR says the VA will provide abortions regardless of state-level abortion bans passed when the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in the June 2022 Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health decision.

Heritage Action is the grassroots nonprofit of the Heritage Foundation, a prominent conservative think tank. A report from the Heritage Foundation determined the VA IFR to be illegal because of the department’s alleged lack of statutory authority, lack of good cause, arbitrary and capricious justification and lack of power to unilaterally preempt contrary state law.