Trump Called 6-Week Abortion Bans A ‘Terrible Thing.’ Now GOP Hits Back.
News outlets report a backlash over former President Donald Trump's recent comments about abortion bans, with governors of states where six-week bans were passed doubling down on rhetoric about "protecting" life. Meanwhile, Sen. Tommy Tuberville, who has been holding up all military promotions over Pentagon abortion policy, is said to be pushing an exception to his blockade.
GOP Governors Who Passed Abortion Bans Hit Trump For Calling Restrictions 'A Terrible Thing'
Staunchly anti-abortion Republican governors who have shepherded abortion restrictions in their states are piling on to Donald Trump for his recent comment labeling Florida’s six-week abortion ban “a terrible thing.” ... “I applaud Governor @KimReynoldsIA and the Iowa legislature for promoting a culture of life,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wrote on X. “Donald Trump is wrong to attack the heartbeat bill as ‘terrible.’ Standing for life is a noble cause.” (Zhang, 9/19)
Iowa Governor Defends 6-Week Abortion Ban After Trump ‘Terrible Thing’ Comments
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) defended legislation she signed that bans most abortions after six weeks of pregnancy, after former President Trump called Florida’s six-week ban on the procedure a “terrible thing.” “It’s never a ‘terrible thing’ to protect innocent life,” Reynolds said Tuesday in a post on X. “I’m proud of the fetal heartbeat bill the Iowa legislature passed and I signed in 2018 and again earlier this year.” (Timotija, 9/19)
Kemp Joins In Defense Of 6-Week Abortion Ban Amid Trump Blowback
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) defended a six-week abortion ban after former President Trump criticized a similar ban Sunday. “There’s nothing ‘terrible’ about standing up for life.” Kemp posted on X Tuesday. “In addition to passing the heartbeat bill, Georgia has proudly protected and valued life through implementing adoption and foster care reforms, and combatting human trafficking —and will continue to do so as long as I’m governor.” (Sforza, 9/19)
More abortion updates —
Tuberville To Try Going Around His Own Abortion Blockade To Confirm Marine Commandant
Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.) told senators that he will attempt to force a one-off vote Wednesday to confirm Gen. Eric Smith to become the new commandant for the Marine Corps, while he maintains his blockade on more than 300 other military promotions. (Weaver, 9/19)
Progressives Push Democrats To Reach Beyond Roe In Abortion Battles
Rachel O’Leary Carmona, executive director of Women’s March, characterized the focus on simply bringing back Roe’s protections as too narrow and “backward looking.” “Roe is gone. It’s gone, and it’s not coming back in the form that it was in,” O’Leary Carmona said, urging Democrats to think bigger and broader. “Public opinion on abortion has shifted and it’s shifted in favor of abortion. So now is the time for Democrats to strike when the iron is hot and put forth a vision that is of a future where we can all win,” she said. (Weixel, 9/19)
The Washington Post:
Billboards Tell I-55 Drivers ‘Abortion Is OK, You Are Loved’
When she drove past a new billboard along Interstate 55 in Arkansas earlier this month, a 58-year-old woman cried. The billboard, which said in big block letters “God’s plan includes abortion,” reminded her of the abortion she’d had 41 years ago. Queen, who spoke on the condition that her last name not be used out of fear of harassment, said that she was taught as a child that abortion was a sin. Seeing a message like the one she passed this month would’ve reassured her that the procedure was her best choice, she said. That feeling of support is what Amelia Bonow, the executive director of the activist group Shout Your Abortion, hoped to spread when she recently posted six billboards along I-55, which runs through five states that have banned most abortions. (Melnick, 9/20)
In other reproductive health news —
Maternity And Family Leave Have Been Expanded For Florida's State Employees
Maternity and family leave have been expanded for Florida state employees. The expansion, approved Monday at a meeting of Gov. Ron DeSantis and his Cabinet, will allow eligible state employees to receive paid maternity leave for up to seven weeks and parental leave for two weeks, which can be combined to provide nine weeks of paid leave for mothers. Previously, state employees could use sick and annual leave or unpaid leave following the birth of a child. (9/19)
The Boston Globe:
Some Health Experts Say There’s A ‘Concerning Decline’ In HPV Vaccination Rates Since Pandemic Began
Planned Parenthood of Southern New England is seeing a “concerning decline” in vaccination rates for human papillomavirus, or HPV, with vaccinations down roughly 40 percent over the last few years, according to health experts from the organization. The reason? Primarily the pandemic, experts say, after people put off in-person doctors appointments, and as a result, certain preventative health measures, like getting the HPV vaccine. (Bowker, 9/19)
FDA Weighs Limits Of Animal Data In Assessing Artificial Wombs
The Food and Drug Administration’s advisory panel of pediatric experts met on Tuesday to discuss advances in artificial womb technology, which aim to save the lives of premature babies. The goal of the meeting was to discuss measures for evaluating the safety and efficacy of an artificial womb. The group grappled with the limits of current animal data, as well as the ethical difficulties in running human trials. On Wednesday, the committee’s meeting will be closed to the public in order to protect trade secrets. (Lawrence, 9/19)