Senate GOP called 'dumb' as they block bill by Dems that would guarantee access to contraception

Senate GOP called 'dumb' as they block bill by Dems that would guarantee access to contraception
Senator Lisa Murkowski joined the Democrats in support of the access to contraceptive bill (Getty Images)

WASHINGTON DC: Senate Republicans blocked a Democratic bill on Wednesday, June 5, which aimed to guarantee access to contraception across the country. Democrats are highlighting this issue as the November elections draw near.

The Right to Contraception Act aimed to codify the right to purchase and use contraceptives, including birth control pills, Plan B, condoms, and other methods, into federal law as well as obligate health care providers to supply them.

However, the bill did not pass a procedural vote, falling short with a count of 51 to 39. Most Republicans considered the vote as a political maneuver, unnecessary and excessively broad.

Senate Republicans oppose a bill granting nationwide right to IVF

GOP Senators Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins joined the Democrats in support of the bill, while Senator Schumer changed his vote to "no" in a strategic move, preserving the option to reintroduce the bill later.

“This is a show vote. It’s not serious,” GOP Senator John Cornyn of Texas remarked. “Plus, it’s a huge overreach. It doesn’t make any exceptions for conscience. … It’s a phony vote because contraception, to my knowledge, is not illegal. It’s not unavailable.”

The vote is a component of a broader initiative by Senate Democrats to spotlight the impact of the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v Wade on all facets of reproductive health, not solely abortion, as the election nears.

Democrats are emphasizing the issue this month, coinciding with the second anniversary of the high court's decision.

“In the coming weeks, Senate Democrats will put reproductive freedoms front and center before this chamber, so that the American people can see for themselves who will stand up to defend their fundamental liberties,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement before the vote.

Democratic senators have introduced a legislative package to establish a nationwide right to in-vitro fertilization (IVF), expected to be voted on as early as next week, CNN reported.

This comes in the wake of an Alabama state Supreme Court ruling earlier this year, which deemed the destruction of embryos as potential "wrongful deaths."

Republicans have proposed legislation on IVF and contraception to counter Democrats' portrayal

Although the state's legislature has taken steps to safeguard IVF following the ruling, Democrats contend that this instance is merely one of many indicating that access to reproductive health care is at risk nationwide.

“In the nearly two years since the Supreme Court threw out Roe v. Wade, our nation has seen the horrific consequences of Republicans’ anti-science, anti-woman crusade that has put IVF at risk for millions of Americans who rely on it to start or grow their family,” Illinois Democratic Senator Tammy Duckworth, who has conceived through IVF, stated.

Republicans have proposed legislation on IVF and contraception to counter the Democrats' portrayal of them as extreme.

GOP Senators Katie Britt and Ted Cruz introduced the IVF Protection Act in May, while Republican Senator Joni Ernst presented a different bill aimed at enhancing access to contraception.

“We will have an alternative that will make very clear that Republicans are for contraception,” Senate GOP Whip John Thune remarked.

Before the vote on the Democrat-led bill, Ernst sought to advance her alternative contraception bill through unanimous consent, which was obstructed by Democrats.

Plan B One-Step does not stop a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus

When questioned about how her proposal differs from the Democrats' intentions, Ernst explained, “It does not include Plan B, which many folks on the right would consider abortive services. Big distinction. We want to prevent a pregnancy, not end a pregnancy.”

The US Food and Drug Administration has stated that the emergency contraceptive pill known as Plan B One-Step does not stop a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus, nor does it induce an abortion.

The pill, a high dose of the birth control hormone levonorgestrel, works by preventing or postponing ovulation, the release of an egg from the ovary, which is a process that takes place before pregnancy begins.

Democrats propose the  Right to IVF Act to address embryo destruction

Democrats contend that the GOP-led bills are inadequate, with Democratic Senator Patty Murray asserting that the IVF legislation proposed by Britt and Cruz would not effectively safeguard the procedure as it fails to address the issue of embryo destruction.

“Unlike GOP legislation that would not protect IVF and is only a PR tool for Republicans to hide their extremism, our Right to IVF Act would actually protect Americans from attempts to restrict IVF and would allow more people to access these vital services at a lower cost,” she remarked.

On Tuesday, Democrats concentrated on reproductive healthcare in a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing called "The Assault on Women’s Freedoms."

Following the hearing, Murray stated to the press that "the personal nature of women's experiences is beyond Republican reinterpretation, and the Republican Party's record is too evident for denial."

Democratic Senators Ed Markey, Mazie Hirono, and Duckworth introduced a bill ensuring access to contraception.

Internet considers the access to contraception bill as 'useless'

After the news went viral, social media users expressed their opinions on the same. One user wrote, "Lol useless bill, contraceptives not illegal and available to everyone. This bill is designed to sway electorates."


Another added, "Hormone blocker. That's basically what it is... very bad for young females."


One commentator said, "Republicans are planning to ban birth control in 2025. Nationwide Republicans are planning to ban abortion with no exceptions in 2025. Nationwide."


"Men and women should both agree that the birth control pill should be free via every health insurance. this is dumb," a person said.


This article contains remarks made on the Internet by individual people and organizations. MEAWW cannot confirm them independently and does not support claims or opinions being made online.

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