Tammy Duckworth and Barbara Lee Intro Bill to Lift Abortion Restrictions
Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) unveiled a bill on Tuesday that would lift certain federal restrictions on abortion funding. The Equal Access to Abortion Coverage in Health Insurance (EACH) Woman Act would dismantle restrictions that bar federal dollars from being used to pay for abortion services. The two lawmakers say that the legislation aims to combat discriminatory rules that have a particularly adverse effect on poor women and women of color. “No woman should be denied the full spectrum of reproductive health care because of her zip code or income level – yet that is the reality for too many low-income women and women of color,” Lee said. “The EACH Woman Act ensures that every woman is empowered to make critical decisions about her own pregnancy – and has coverage for all pregnancy-related health care, including abortion – regardless of her financial situation.” The bill would expand access to abortion by allowing federal dollars to pay for abortion services, which is currently banned under the Hyde Amendment -- which prohibits any federal money from paying for abortions, except in cases of rape or incest, or if the woman's life is in danger. The legislation would also prohibit politicians from pushing initiatives that dictate whether or not private insurers may cover abortion services in their respective states. “For decades, conservative lawmakers have worked to whittle down that constitutionally-protected right to the point where it’s now effectively inaccessible for low-income women who rely on Medicaid, for female servicemembers and for millions more women nationwide,” Duckworth said. “The Supreme Court didn’t protect these rights only for wealthy women, and they didn’t say only for women who live in certain states. That kind of discrimination is not right, not fair and it’s certainly not equal.” More here.