Republican Congressman Bob Goodlatte of Virginia recently made the suggestion that anti-abortion laws be tightened on the grounds that women having more babies would directly benefit the economy.
“It very much promotes job creation for all the care and services and so on that need to be provided by a lot of people to raise children,” said Goodlatte, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee.
His comments were made in support of the “No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act,” also known as HR 7. The anti-abortion bill is currently advancing in Congress; Goodlatte aided its advancement by scheduling a full committee mark-up on Wednesday.
“Having new children brought into the world is not harmful to job creation,” Goodlatte said. In addition to this economic basis, he reasoned that enforcing anti-choice laws is also the morally correct choice.
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HR 7 would impose restrictions on insurance coverage and tax credits for abortion procedures, thereby raising costs of the procedure and drastically restricting women’s access to it. HR 7 would permanently prohibit the district from using local tax revenue to fund abortions for women who could not afford to pay for them on their own.
Because Republicans have a majority in the House, they were able to call two witnesses to their defense, one of whom, interestingly, was a woman – Helen M. Alvaré, professor of law at George Mason University. Richard Doerflinger, associate director of the USCCB’s Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities acted as the second Republican witness.
The Democrats had only witness: Susan Wood, associate professor of health policy at George Washington University. Wood had previously been an official of the Federal Drug Administration, but resigned in 2005 over what she deemed “political interference in the approval process for the emergency contraception drug Plan B One-Step.”
The Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee have “expressed fierce opposition to HR 7.”
In a letter penned by the Committee’s female members, the Committee’s attempts to “mark up legislation that would harm women’s access to reproductive health care” was described as “truly dispiriting.”
“We strongly oppose this sweeping anti-choice bill,” they stated.
Sources: Think Progress, Truth-out.org
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