Updated with comments from Planned Parenthood Votes NW.
Democrats made several attempts to force a vote on the Reproductive Parity Act this afternoon—in the midst of this clever (albeit bullshit) parliamentary hat trick the Republicans threw down—but they failed, 23-26. This has got to be a bitter pill for women's healthcare advocates, who were pretty confident earlier this week that they had the votes needed to pass the measure.
From PP Votes NW:
While advocates were disappointed that the bill did not come up for a vote in the Senate earlier in the session, they credit Senate Democratic leaders for trying twice during Friday afternoon’s session to bring the bill to the floor. This came amidst procedural antics related to budget concerns. The motion to bring the bill to the floor was voted down twice. Advocates expressed surprise that numerous members from pro-choice districts, including King County Senators Rodney Tom, Steve Litzow, Andy Hill, Joe Fain, and Cheryl Pflug among others, all voted against bringing the bill to a vote.
... With the current war on women raging across the country, the opportunity Washington had to be a leader in protecting women’s health and safety was unique. Unfortunately, Washington’s Senators did not seize on that opportunity. As the Affordable Care Act moves forward, women’s health advocates expressed deep concern that women may face increased barriers to accessing abortion through their insurance policies.
“I am deeply disappointed to see our pro-choice Senate in Washington State fail to ensure women have access to the full insurance coverage they pay for,” said Elaine Rose, CEO of Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest. “Anti-choice politicians in Congress made it difficult enough to access abortion care when they put provisions in the Affordable Care Act to roll back reproductive health care."
“It is truly disappointing to see Washington's elected officials ignore the repeatedly voiced will of the people,” said Lisa Stone, executive director of Legal Voice. “We know Washingtonians support women's right to continue or terminate a pregnancy. The vote today betrays the people's trust.”
Here's the pic that says it all:
- Allies of The Stranger
- Fuck fuck fuck.
(In case you can't read the writing on the screen, "Democrats" Sheldon, Tom, and Hargrove crossed party lines to vote against the legislation.)
Meanwhile, Senator Lisa Brown should be commended for trying her best and speaking passionately about the bill
aboard the Hindenburg before the vote.
“This is one of the most significant issues facing us in the country today," Brown said on the floor. "I urge members to stand on the side of women’s health and the personal freedom of a person to make the decision to control her own body.”
Alas, some Senators still believe that women's rights are just a myth.