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Rep. Wild, Democratic Senators Push For IVF Vote

Sen. Tammy Duckworth, Rep. Susan Wild

In a Tuesday press conference, Sens. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Patty Murray (D-Wash.) called for a vote on their bill to federally protect in-vitro fertilization and other fertility treatments — arguing that it is vital in light of the Alabama Supreme Court ruling that frozen embryos should be protected as people.

Their bill, first introduced in 2022 and reintroduced last month with a House companion led by Rep. Susan Wild (D-Pa.), would establish federal protections that override any state policy restricting IVF access.

The pair is seeking for the legislation – S. 3612 and entitled the Access to Family Building Act – to be adopted by unanimous consent or agreement on any question or matter before the Senate that sets aside a rule of procedure to expedite proceedings.

Duckworth, who had her two daughters via IVF, said that under Alabama’s ruling, her doctor’s decision to discard her non-viable embryos with her consent would’ve potentially been considered manslaughter or murder.

“Last week, Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos created through IVF should be considered children under state law, a ruling based on extreme ideology rather than ban on medical science, and one that throws IVF access into chaos for countless women, as they and their doctors tried to figure out whether they might be criminalized for simply trying to start a family.

“The very people who claim to be defending family values are actively trying to enact policies that would actually prevent Americans from creating those families. IVF providers around the state in Alabama have already paused treatment out of fear that their doctors and patients could be criminally punished. And now that the first domino has fallen, it may only be a matter of time before more hospitals make the same call before more courts issue similar rulings putting more women at risk.”

Wild, who reintroduced the bill last month, has 33 Democratic co-sponsors, including Reps. Mary Gay Scanlon (PA-05) and Chrissy Houlahan (PA-06).

“The recent ruling out of Alabama underscores the immediate need for Congress to pass the Access to Family Building Act –  which I was proud to introduce in the U.S. House – to ensure that no state law can infringe upon the right to undergo IVF treatment,” said Wild.

“Over the past week, I have seen an outpouring of support from Pennsylvanians and my House colleagues wanting to do anything they can to protect hopeful parents that want to start or grow their families using the full range of assisted reproductive technology available. I intend to pursue every possible avenue to make this a reality.”

In a floor speech Monday night, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) argued that Republicans laid the groundwork for the Alabama ruling by working to overturn Roe v. Wade and will suffer electorally as a result.

“Republicans own what happened in Alabama,” he said. “And Republicans will learn when it comes to attacks on their personal freedom, the American people do not easily forget.”

At least one Republican that he may be more open to the bill this time, after the GOP objected to Duckworth’s 2022 attempt to call up the bill.

“I didn’t think it was needed until now. But we may need to take a look,” said Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) on Monday night, adding: “I would have several fewer grandkids if we didn’t have IVF.”

Others continue to insist that no action is required by the chamber.

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) said the problem would be “taken care of in Alabama” — referencing state lawmakers’ scramble to undo or mitigate the decision’s impact and restore IVF access to Alabamaians. He added that he was “not at all” worried about other states following suit despite GOP officials in several states expressing a desire to explore their own restrictions.

Duckworth’s move to call for unanimous consent is also a dare for Republicans to block it.

“I know I’m not alone when I struggle to understand how politicians who support this kind of policy can possibly call themselves pro life after Roe v. Wade was overturned,” said Duckworth. “I warned that red states would come for IVF and now they have, but they aren’t going to score to stop in Alabama. Mark my words. If we don’t act now it will only get worse.

“That’s why tomorrow I’m headed to the Senate floor to call on my colleagues to pass via unanimous consent my ‘Access to Family Building Act,’ which will ensure that every American to become a parent via treatments like IVF is fully protected, regardless of what state they live in, guaranteeing that no parent or doctor is punished.”

Should a GOP senator block the legislation from passing the Senate on Wednesday, Duckworth said she believes that Schumer will hold a roll call vote on the bill that would put each senator on record with supporting protections for IVF or not.

Both of Pennsylvania senators – Bob Casey Jr. and John Fetterman – are co-sponsors of the bill.

“This dangerous decision would not be possible without the Dobbs ruling,” said Casey.

“Republican politicians wiped away a nearly 50-year right and now we’re seeing the devastating consequences. Women are being sent away from hospitals to get sicker before they can be treated and now Alabama women who desperately want a family are unable to get the care they need to conceive. Time and again, Republican politicians have proven that they cannot be trusted when it comes to women’s reproductive health.”

One Response

  1. “Billionaire” Trump cannot come up with the half billion needed for his appeal bond. LOL Let the Sheriff Sales begin.


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