The U.S. Capitol as seen in November 2011. (Architect of the Capitol)
All four Democratic members of the U.S. House from Colorado — Jason Crow, Diana DeGette, Joe Neguse and Ed Perlmutter — are co-sponsoring the Women’s Health Protection Act of 2021, which would protect a woman’s right to get an abortion, and would prohibit states from creating bans or medically unnecessary restrictions on abortions.
Newsline reached out to all seven members of Colorado’s congressional delegation, including Republicans Lauren Boebert, Ken Buck and Doug Lamborn, to ask where they stand on the legislation, H.R. 3755. Among those who responded, here’s what they said:
Crow, a Democrat representing Colorado’s 6th Congressional District, is an original co-sponsor of WHPA.
“With increasingly brazen attacks on Roe. v. Wade, it’s time we codify equal access to abortion care in this country,” Crow wrote in a statement provided by Kaylin Dines, the communications director for Crow. “Passing the Women’s Health Protection Act will help ensure every person — regardless of who they are or where they live — is free to make the best health care decisions for themselves, their families, and their lives.”
Boebert, of Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, expressed her position on the legislation in a Washington Examiner joint op-ed, her office told Newsline. “Although the Women’s Health Protection Act claims abortion access is essential to women’s participation in ‘the social and economic life of the Nation,’ we know that women do not need to kill their pre-born children to function equally within society,” Boebert wrote. “Multitasking women are capable of all that life has to offer, including pursuing educational goals and professional development alongside child-rearing.”
DeGette spokesperson Jane Fillion noted that the Denver congresswoman is a lead co-sponsor of the WHPA and a co-chair of the Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus.
Perlmutter’s director of communications, Ashley Verville, provided a statement from the representative: “I have long supported a women’s right to choose what is best for her health and her family in consultation with her doctor … To that end, I am a cosponsor of the Women’s Health Protection Act and signed onto the amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold Roe v. Wade. I support the legislation and will continue to work to ensure every woman has equal access to reproductive health care and the freedom to live the life they choose.”
Sens. Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper of Colorado, both Democrats, also have signed on to the WHPA.
About the bill
If passed, the Women’s Health Protection Act would authorize health care providers to provide abortions to women without limitations, such requiring women seeking abortions to make unnecessary in-person visits prior to receiving an abortion. The act also prohibits states from banning or limiting abortions at any point prior to fetal viability.
In a Wednesday press release, Cobalt, a Colorado organization that works to advance reproductive rights and abortion access, urged the U.S. House of Representatives to pass HR-3755. “Since 2011, anti-abortion lawmakers have pushed more than 500 restrictive laws through state legislatures that make abortion difficult and, sometimes, impossible to access,” the press release says. “These abortion restrictions and bans are becoming more extreme—and are disproportionately harming people who already face discriminatory obstacles to health care, particularly Black, Indigenous, and other people of color, those working to make ends meet, women, young people, people with disabilities, immigrants, people living in rural communities, and members of the LGBTQI+ community.”
“We need Congress to pass WHPA and affirm the Constitutional right to abortion into federal law so these attacks on abortion access will stop,” said Cobalt President Karen Middleton in the press release. “Coloradans have said again and again they support abortion rights, and our federal laws should reflect those values.”
A January poll of 1,629 registered voters conducted by Hart Research Associates found that 61% of voters support the Women’s Health Protection Act.
This is the first “pro-active abortion rights” legislation being voted on in Congress in almost 30 years, according to Cobalt.
Texas recently passed the most restrictive abortion ban in the nation, and the U.S. Supreme Court declined to block it. The law took effect Sept. 1.
The House of Representatives is expected to vote on the Women’s Health Protection Act on Friday morning.
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