07.18.18

Murray, Blumenthal, ACOG Experts Speak Out Against Trump-Pence Efforts to Undermine Women’s Health

Senator Murray, Senator Blumenthal, and experts from American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists outlined the potential damage of the Trump-Pence Administration’s proposed changes to federal family planning program

 

Administration’s proposal would restrict access to care for millions of women and interfere with providers’ ability to discuss full range of reproductive care

 

Changes would impact care providers that deliver contraceptives to more than 82,000 patients in Washington state annually, 46,000 patients in Connecticut, and millions nationally

 

Proposed rule is one of many efforts from Trump Administration to undermine women’s health, including President Trump’s promise to nominate extreme conservatives, like Judge Kavanaugh, to the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade

 

Murray: “This is the completely wrong direction for our country to be going in, and I’m going to keep speaking out against it.”

 

Blumenthal: “We cannot sit idly by while women’s personal choices about their reproductive health come under assault.”

 

(Washington, D.C.) — Yesterday, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) joined Dr. Lisa M. Hollier, President of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), and Dr. Katherine W. McHugh, ACOG Junior Fellow Chair, for a press conference at the U.S. Capitol building to highlight how the Trump-Pence Administration’s proposed changes to the Title X family planning program would harm women and families. The Administration’s alarming proposal would restrict Title X family planning funds, jeopardize care for women across the country, and interfere with providers’ ability to discuss the full range of reproductive care options with patients.

 

Senator Murray previously released an analysis showing in Washington state alone the rule would impact care providers that deliver contraceptives to more than 82,000 patients each year. She also released state-by-state reports showing the impact the rule would have for millions of families across the entire country.

 

“This rule would pull the rug out from under millions of women who are already struggling,” said Senator Murray. “It would mean that as a woman, whether or not you can get the care you need depends more and more on how much money you have, or where you live. This is the completely wrong direction for our country to be going in, and I’m going to keep speaking out against it.”

 

 “The domestic gag rule, efforts to completely defund Planned Parenthood, and the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court are all part of the Trump Administration’s concerted, coordinated campaign to roll back progress on women’s health and rights. With the selection of Judge Kavanaugh, the administration would take our nation back to one of its darkest times—when abortion was criminalized and when women died and were denied access to basic health care services like contraception and the morning-after pill,” said Senator Blumenthal. “We cannot sit idly by while women’s personal choices about their reproductive health come under assault.”

 

“When women come to see their ob-gyn to discuss family planning options, it’s vital that they can trust that their doctor will provide medically accurate and detailed information to help them make an informed decision about what’s best for them. This is essential to the mission of the Title X program,” said Dr. Lisa M. Hollier, President of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). “Title X is a tremendous success story and the proposed changes to the program would directly contradict its purpose. These changes do no put women first or improve medical accuracy or patient protections. They accomplish only one goal: putting politicians right in the center of our exam rooms.”

 

Full text of Senator Murray’s remarks:

 

“Thank you Dr. Hollier, Dr. McHugh, and all of you for being here. And thank you to the member physicians in the Capitol today, and working nonstop across the country, from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

 

“As you’ve heard, the Title X program is a vital source of preventive and reproductive care for women nationwide—particularly women who might otherwise not be able to afford the care they need. Providers who receive Title X funding help diagnose women’s medical conditions early through services like cancer screenings. They provide access to birth control, contributing to a 30-year low in unplanned pregnancies.

 

“They offer women the information and health care they need to make the choices that are best for them and for their families. That’s something that every woman should be able to do—regardless of how much money she makes or where she lives, but the Trump Administration’s proposed domestic gag would take us further away from that goal.

 

“This rule would pull the rug out from under millions of women who are already struggling. It would allow extreme politicians to pick and choose among qualified providers—including Planned Parenthood—meaning that the millions of patients who go to Planned Parenthood each year could find themselves without access to the provider they trust.

 

“It would interfere with the doctor-patient relationship in a way the government has never done before in our country—requiring doctors not to provide information about abortion in order to receive Title X funds.

 

“It would mean that as a woman, whether or not you can get the care you need depends more and more on how much money you have, or where you live.

 

“This is the completely wrong direction for our country to be going in, and I’m going to keep speaking out against it.

 

“This domestic gag rule is one part of a larger effort by the Trump-Pence Administration to undermine women’s reproductive rights in every way they can, which is why I also want to point out today that, if anyone still doubts President Trump has chosen a Supreme Court nominee who will take away women’s reproductive rights, look no further than this domestic gag rule and to what President Trump is saying and doing.

 

“This is the same President who promised to appoint Justices who would overturn Roe v. Wade, who said women should be punished for having abortions, whose Vice President predicted that Roe would be overturned in our lifetimes and reiterated just last week that he wants this historic ruling overturned, and who thinks it is okay for bosses to decide whether their workers can use birth control.

 

“President Trump and his Administration are proving exactly where they stand by attempting, with this domestic gag rule, to chip away at women’s access to health care and their constitutionally protected rights at the same time as they try to put Judge Kavanaugh on the bench to strike down Roe v. Wade.

 

“We need to do everything we can to make clear that the Trump-Pence vision of women’s health care in the United States—controlled by extreme politicians and accessible only if you’re wealthy—is not what the vast majority of people in this country want.

 

“People want their daughters and granddaughters to have stronger rights—and more opportunity—not less. That’s what I’m going to keep working toward and I urge everyone who agrees to speak up, loudly. It’s never mattered more.

 

“Thank you again to everyone at ACOG for the important work you do each day. Now I’ll open it up for any questions.”

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