Home / General / Republicans to block bill protecting IVF while claiming they don’t oppose IVF

Republicans to block bill protecting IVF while claiming they don’t oppose IVF

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Believe their conduct, not their words:

Senate Republicans on Wednesday appeared ready to block a bill that would establish federal protections for in vitro fertilization and other fertility treatments in the wake of a ruling by the Alabama Supreme Court that frozen embryos should be considered children.

Senator Tammy Duckworth, Democrat of Illinois, planned to try to bring the bill up on Wednesday under a procedure that allows any one senator to object and stop it in its tracks, effectively daring Republicans to oppose the measure and highlighting divisions within the G.O.P. on how to handle the issue. The bill would establish a federal right to access to I.V.F. and fertility treatments.

Democrats orchestrated the action as they sought to highlight the hypocrisy of Republicans who have rushed to voice support for I.V.F. after the Alabama ruling, even though many of them have sponsored legislation that declares that life begins at the moment of fertilization. Such a bill could severely curtail or even outlaw aspects of the treatments.

“This is really to call out my Republican colleagues,” Ms. Duckworth said in an interview on Wednesday. “If this is urgent and you care deeply about this as you say you do — like you’ve been saying in the last 72-plus hours since the Alabama Supreme Court ruling — then don’t object. Let this bill pass.” She argued that the bill’s protections were all the more essential since the decision by Alabama’s Republican-majority court.

The legislation was the latest instance of Republicans trying to walk a political tightrope — made more perilous by the Alabama ruling — since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and made real many Americans’ fears of losing their access to reproductive health care. Democrats have vowed to pummel Republicans on the issue this election year, buoyed by polls that show that access to abortion and contraception is a major concern for voters that could drive them away from Republicans.

Yes, pummel them — I am at least heartened if Democratic campaigns are finally getting it.

A critical point here is that the key move by Republicans will be to nominally support IVF but also to support anti-reproductive freedom bullshit that renders it either ineffectual or prohibitively expensive:

If Republicans wanted to protect IVF they would actually act to protect IVF. They’re not going to.

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