The Judiciary Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives passed HR 7 on Wednesday, a bill that, among several other provisions, would prevent the government from using taxpayer money to fund abortions.
The bill was introduced in Congress in May 2013 and would prohibit federal health care facilities from providing abortion, prevent taxpayer money from funding abortions, and eliminate medical-expense deductions for abortion care. The primary exception of the law is that abortions caused by rape or incest would still be a taxpayer issue, causing critics to refer to HR 7 as the “rape insurance bill.” The bill is more commonly (and more bluntly) being referred to as the No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act, Think Progress reports.
According to Bustle, several Democratic politicians participated in a protest outside the House Judiciary Committee’s room in the Rayburn Office Building after the bill passed on Wednesday, speaking out against the anti-abortion panel. Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.), Rep. Louise Slaughter (D—N.Y.) and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton of D.C. were amongst the prominent politicians in attendance.
Rep. Slaughter addressed the crowd of roughly 100 people during the protest.
“It’s increasingly evident that the only women’s agenda that the Republicans have put forward is to take away your health care rights and then tell you to get lost. Women are sick and tired of these constant attacks on our constitutionally-protected right to choose, while priorities like equal pay, fair wages and paid family leave go unaddressed,” said Rep. Slaughter.
The GOP has been attempting to pass the bill for several months now, and the result of the House Judiciary Committee signifies an early victory.