Women Lead the Charge for Comprehensive Health Care
The post was written by WCF Fellow, Stephanie Glover
Women stand to gain a lot from health care reform and women in Congress are leading the charge to make comprehensive health care a reality for all Americans. Responding to the Stupak amendment is a top priority for many legislators; the Stupak amendment drastically reduces the availability of reproductive health care and any law that includes such an amendment can no longer be considered comprehensive.
Not surprisingly, the women of Congress are leading the movement to oppose the Stupak amendment. Over 40 House Democrats have signed a letter to Speaker Pelosi pledging to vote against any health care bill that includes the Stupak amendment. Who’s circulating this letter? Why, yes, it is a woman. Representative Diane DeGette of Colorado. The signatories have not yet been released, but I’m willing to bet there is a high percentage of women on that list, too. The letter states:
As Members of Congress we believe that women should have access to a full range of reproductive health care. Health care reform must not be misused as an opportunity to restrict women’s access to reproductive health services…We will not vote for a conference report that contains language that restricts women’s right to choose any further than current law.
Other leading women in the House of Representatives have echoed this sentiment. Representative Debbie Wasserman-Schultz “threw the down gauntlet” on MSNBC when she said she’s “confident” the amendment will not be attached to the final bill. And, she plans to work hard to make sure this is the outcome.
This amendment specifically targets health care that applies to women, so it makes sense that women are leading the opposition to it. If only there were more women in Congress, perhaps we wouldn’t have an amendment to oppose.
Hearing Representative Wasserman-Schultz say that she is confident makes me confident that the women and men in the House and Senate will do their bests to ensure that we have real, affordable, comprehensive health care reform.
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