Rauner: Expanding abortion coverage too controversial

Illinois Gov-elect Bruce Rauner talks to the media after a meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington December 5, 2014. REUTERS/Larry Downing/File Photo

CHICAGO — Gov. Bruce Rauner says he no longer supports expanding abortion coverage for state workers and Medicaid recipients because it’s too controversial and Illinois needs to focus on other issues such as creating jobs.

As a candidate, the Republican stated in a 2014 questionnaire he disliked existing law restricting taxpayer-funded abortion coverage because it “unfairly restricts access based on income.” He said he’d support a legislative effort to reverse the law.

But Rauner now opposes legislation Democrats are pushing.

He spoke publicly about the issue for the first time Friday.

Rauner says “what we should not do is take on controversial divisive issues right now.” He says “we need to focus” on getting a balanced budget, reduced property taxes and lawmaker term limits.

Rauner supports existing law, which provides coverage in cases of rape, incest and for health and life of the mother.

–Associated Press

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