House Approves Measure to Protect Abortion Rights

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Politics|House approves measurement to support termination rights amid threats from states and the courts.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
Credit...J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press

Carl Hulse

  • Sept. 24, 2021Updated 12:45 p.m. ET

The House connected Friday narrowly approved a measurement intended to enact termination rights into national law, arsenic Democrats sought to antagonistic efforts astatine the authorities level to restrict abortions and increasing hostility to termination rights from the conservative-leaning Supreme Court.

Acting aft the precocious tribunal refused to artifact stringent caller Texas limits connected abortion, lawmakers voted 218 to 211 to nonstop the Women’s Health Protection Act to the Senate, wherever it is improbable to pass. Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York and the bulk leader, is expected to announce, though, that helium volition bring the measurement to the level successful the adjacent future.

Democratic authors of the measurement heralded the ballot arsenic historic, fixed what they described arsenic mounting threats to the 1973 Roe v. Wade determination establishing a close to abortion. They framed it arsenic a crisp rebuke to the Supreme Court for allowing the Texas instrumentality prohibiting astir abortions aft six weeks to spell into unit earlier this month.

“If the justices implicit determination successful that gathering won’t act, this House of Representatives volition act,” said Representative Diana DeGette, a Colorado Democrat and a longtime backer of termination rights.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who called for the measurement to beryllium considered rapidly aft the Texas decision, lashed retired astatine the tribunal for failing to intercede to artifact the caller law, arguing that it had ignored 50 years of precedent connected abortion.

“When this tribunal embraced this shameful Texas law, they brought shame to the United States Supreme Court,” she said earlier the vote. “What were they thinking, oregon were they thinking, oregon were they were conscionable rubber-stamping what they were sent to the tribunal to do?”

Republicans uniformly opposed the measure, which they called utmost and said would pb to abortions astatine each stages of gestation and overturn hundreds of authorities laws. They said the measurement went acold beyond codifying Roe and should much rightfully beryllium called the “Abortion On Demand Until Birth Act.”

“This termination connected request measure would destruct our country’s future,” said Representative Jackie Walorski, Republican of Indiana. “A kid successful the womb is simply a surviving person, and yet my colleagues connected the different broadside stay obsessed with sidesplitting unborn babies successful the sanction of pistillate empowerment.”

“This volition nullify each humble pro-life regularisation ever enacted by the states,” said Representative Chris Smith, Republican of New Jersey. “This measure constitutes an existential menace to unborn babies.”

Democrats said the measurement was urgently needed since the Supreme Court would aboriginal this twelvemonth to see a Mississippi instrumentality that termination rights activists fearfulness could pb to further erosion of Roe v. Wade, oregon its outright overturning.

In the Senate, Mr. Schumer had not antecedently committed to allowing a ballot connected the measure, which would astir surely beryllium blocked by a Republican filibuster. The Democratic person has been reluctant to unit votes successful the 50-50 Senate connected measures that don’t person a minimum 50 votes, and astatine slightest 2 Democrats person not endorsed the House bill.

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