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Corporations Threatened Loss of Business for Indiana Over Pro-life Law. One Year Later, Indiana’s Economy Continues to Thrive

by | Jun 23, 2023

By Mike Fichter, President and CEO Indiana Right to Life

Hoosier values are not a deterrent to economic growth, they are the engine that drives it.

Last summer, when Indiana passed a historic law prohibiting most abortions, a handful of businesses threatened economic doom for the state.

As is typical for many corporations who feel the need to provide an opinion on every issue du jour, some companies said they would be looking outside of Indiana for future growth, claiming, for example, the new law will make it difficult to attract talent to Indiana.

At the time, Governor Eric Holcomb rightly dismissed the corporate threats, insisting the state would continue to add jobs and investments.

“It’s because of access to talent,” Holcomb said. “And we have that access to talent – we had it yesterday, we have it today and we’ll have it tomorrow.”

He was right. Almost a year after SB 1 was signed (and even as it hangs in the balance at the Indiana Supreme Court), Gov. Holcomb recently announced a major economic development for St. Joseph County.

According to the South Bend Tribune,

After more than 1½ years of work, St. Joseph County has landed the largest economic development in its history and possibly the state’s.

Gov. Eric Holcomb announced Tuesday morning that General Motors would build its EV battery complex with its partner Samsung SDI on about 650 acres of agricultural land at Larrison Boulevard and Indiana 2 just east of New Carlisle.

Already, the project has grown to $3.5 billion and is expected to employ 1,600 people in the next two years.

The irony is this economic windfall comes on the heels of the closure of Whole Women’s Health Alliance, a chemical abortion facility in South Bend. In a statement issued earlier this month, the business’ president mourned closing WWHA’s doors while boasting of more than 1,000 chemical abortions that her group carried out in South Bend. More than one thousand abortions. The loss of life in South Bend is stunning to consider – a tragedy that can never be reversed. 

And yet, hope is on the horizon. As abortion begins to flee our state, it is apparent that a bright future of growth awaits Hoosier women and children. South Bend is not alone in experiencing Indiana’s economic vibrancy. 

U.S. News and World Report recently rated South Bend, Fort Wayne, and Indianapolis as three of the best U.S. cities to live in. Two of the three, South Bend and Fort Wayne, are now abortion-clinic free.

Forbes Advisor ranks Indiana as the best state to start a business in 2023. With a combination of low taxes, a reasonable cost of living and a prime workforce, Indiana provides ideal conditions for new businesses to succeed.

Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) and TEConomy Partners’ biennial survey of the U.S. life sciences industry recognizes Indiana for its outstanding healthcare and life sciences strengths, as evidenced by the sectors’ $150 billion economic impact. 

“Indiana’s life sciences industry continues to drive innovation and rank in the top quintile nationwide,“ notes Patty Martin, president and CEO of BioCrossroads. “Our employment numbers have increased by 8 percent over the last three years; our venture capital investments have grown; and we have maintained our status as a leader in the pharmaceutical, medical device and agriculture sectors.”

According to data released by the American Legislative Exchange Council earlier this year, Indiana attracted $22.2 billion in new investments from businesses either expanding existing operations or building new facilities. It marked the sixth straight year the state set a record for business investment. It’s the 10th straight year Indiana has been ranked in the report’s top 10 for its economic outlook. 

If talented workers need even more incentive to build careers in Indiana, the National Association of Realtors ranks Indiana as the fourth most affordable state for buying a home.

Politically motivated predictions of economic doom resulting from Indiana’s new pro-life law failed to make a direct comparison to neighboring Illinois, a state whose law enshrines abortion on demand up the moment of full-term birth. No surprise here – Illinois just experienced its ninth straight year of population decline, primarily driven by residents fleeing what is now the Midwest’s abortion destination state.   

In the end, prophecies of Indiana’s pro-life law hampering the state’s economy are proving themselves to be hollow. Even corporations posturing on the issue appear to be content with paying abortion-supporting employees to relocate, or to travel to other states for abortions. Yet these companies remain in Indiana, because they know a thriving economy, and a high-quality workforce, when they see it. 

Categories: State Legislation
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