Senate Republicans Block Abortion Bill

Senate Republicans prevented Democrats from advancing a bill that sought to restore abortion protections.

The bill brought to the floor, the “Reproductive Freedom for Women Act,” was a measure declaring the “sense of Congress” that the abortion protections previously had under Roe “should be restored and built upon, moving towards a future where there is reproductive freedom for all.”

In a 49-44 vote, the bill failed. It needed 60 votes to move forward.

Two Republicans, Senators Lisa Murkowski (AL) and Susan Collins (ME), voted in favor of the measure.

Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), the lead sponsor of the bill, said, “The American people have not just been speaking with their own votes—they have been using their voices and sharing their own personal stories of the nightmares that Republican abortion bans have put them through.”

“I cannot stress enough how transparently unserious it is for Trump and Republicans to pretend they are somehow returning abortion ‘to the people,’ when in reality, they are doing the exact opposite. Republicans are giving politicians power that once belonged to an individual woman—letting politicians force women to stay pregnant—and they are trying to sell that as giving people a bigger voice in this issue.”

“Do Republicans really think Americans are that stupid?” Murray asked. “Do Republicans really think they can take away a constitutional right and convince us it’s a win for freedom? That is insulting.”

In a policy statement, the Biden administration voiced its support for Murray’s bill.

“The Administration strongly supports Senate passage of S. 4554, the Reproductive Freedom for Women Act,” the policy statement says. “For nearly 50 years, Roe v. Wade protected a woman’s constitutional right to make deeply personal health care decisions and to control her own destiny. Women in every state relied on this fundamental freedom—and the broader right to privacy that has served as the basis for so many other critical rights and protections.”

“Today, more than 20 states have dangerous and extreme abortion bans in effect, some without exceptions for rape or incest,” the statement adds.

Republicans are “putting women’s health and lives at risk and unleashing chaos and cruelty across America,” the Biden admin claims, noting that it stands “with the vast majority of Americans who agree that reproductive health care decisions should be made by a woman with her doctor—not by politicians.”