But Heineman’s comments angered the bill’s supporters, including an anti-abortion group, and underscores a key debate surrounding the bill:
State Sen. Kathy Campbell of Lincoln, the chief sponsor of the bill, said she was “disturbed” that the comment about Planned Parenthood wasn’t raised until after the measure had progressed through three rounds of debate in the Legislature. [...]
Supporters and opponents of LB 599 agree on one point: It is a difficult issue that pits the protection of unborn babies against the distribution of taxpayer benefits to illegal immigrants.
Heineman on Friday repeated his argument that taxes paid by “hardworking Nebraskans” should not be used for women who violated immigration laws, and that passage of LB 599 would make the state “a sanctuary” for illegal immigrants. [...]
While Heineman said it was not a “pro-life issue,” many supporters of the bill said that is the basis of their support.
“This bill fundamentally respects the life that is created,” said Omaha Sen. Jeremy Nordquist, regardless of the mother’s immigration status.
The bill’s proponents say the charge is a last-minute attempt to stop the bill that has divided anti-abortion groups and anti-immigration groups. The Nebraska legislature will vote Wednesday to attempt to override the governor’s veto.