Congressional Democrats are again trying to stop the Republican onslaught of medically unnecessary hurdles to obtaining abortion care.
Under the Women’s Health Protection Act, neither the states nor the federal government could single out abortion providers for restrictions that don’t apply to similar medical services. That would mean no more TRAP (targeted regulation of abortion provider) laws, forced ultrasounds, mandated waiting periods, or restrictions on medication abortion and specific abortion procedures, among other anti-choice inventions of conservative legislatures flourishing despite the U.S. Supreme Court striking down unconstitutional Texas requirements.
Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) have reintroduced the Women’s Health Protection Act, as they did in the last two congresses. Although the legislation remains unlikely to advance in the GOP-controlled U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate, the strong showing of original co-sponsors signals that Democrats in both chambers remain largely united in their resistance to the Trump administration’s anti-choice agenda.
National Abortion Federation President and CEO Vicki Saporta said the legislation takes on new urgency given Trump’s pledge to nominate an anti-choice Supreme Court justice and Vice President Mike Pence’s vow to “send Roe v. Wade to the ash heap of history, where it belongs.”
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“Given the excessive targeting of abortion providers in the states and the Trump-Pence agenda of totally banning abortion, the time has come for a federal law that would protect abortion access for women throughout the country,” Saporta said in a statement. “We cannot continue to allow anti-choice politicians to interfere with women’s private medical decisions.”
Since Trump took office, congressional Democrats have bolstered their opposition to the anti-choice administration. They reintroduced the EACH Woman Act to end the discriminatory Hyde Amendment, a disproportionate barrier to abortion care for people with low incomes and people of color. They also challenged Trump’s dangerous expansion of the “global gag rule,” an anti-choice policy prohibiting U.S. foreign aid to organizations that provide abortion care abroad with their own funds.