Sometimes it seems like women are treated like breeding stock by Republicans when it comes to reproductive autonomy. But in Illinois, Rep. Darlene Senger, of Naperville proved it by putting a bill she sponsored regarding regulating clinics that perform abortions in front of the state's agriculture committee rather than a health committee. Opponents of the bill, unhappy that women were being treated like cattle, responded with cow t-shirts.
Via The Chicago Tribune:
The regulation bill is yet another TRAP law attempt that applies additional and burdensome regulations to clinics in an attempt to force them to shut down. Many states are considering these unconstitutional bills, but no other legislature has been so blatant about calling women animals meant for breeding.
Connell and other opponents of the bill wore T-shirts to the hearing that featured a picture of a cow and included the "Women are not livestock" slogan to question why a bill dealing with health issues was being heard in the agriculture committee.
Connell said the only reason she can come up with is that the committee has a long track record of being "hostile to abortion rights."
"They put it in this committee so they could try to ram it on to the floor of the General Assembly and hope that nobody was paying attention to the real health consequences of this," Connell said. "So I think that we ought to be calling, 'Shame, shame, shame,' on Rep. Senger and the members of the Agriculture Committee, who may have expertise in regulating muskrats and fertilizer and heifers and road kill, but women I respectfully submit are not livestock."
Senger said she did not know why her bill was assigned to the committee and that she did not specifically request it be heard there.
"I don't know, these committees have been all over the place this time. I've got some other bills in some crazy places right now too," Senger said.
When asked if the ideological makeup of the committee was the reason for the bill's assignment, Senger said, "I couldn't comment on that."
But Steve Brown, spokesman for House Speaker Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, said the legislation went to the committee at Senger’s request.