On Tuesday House Republicans passed a spending bill that once again targets poor women in the District Columbia by maintaining a ban on government-funded abortions.
The budget bill prevents the city from using its own taxpayer money to pay fund abortion services for low-income women. The ban on this kind of funding has been in place every year that Republicans have controlled the House since 1994. It’s a controversial measure and reflective of the generalized paternalistic approach House Republicans take towards the residents of DC.
Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) said in a statement Tuesday that she was pleased that the bill funded “most of her top priorities” and vowed that she and a coalition of outside groups would fight to have the abortion provision removed before the final legislation becomes law.
“We are deeply disappointed that the introduced version of the fiscal year 2013 D.C. appropriations bill again includes the D.C. abortion rider, but with help from the coalition and the District’s friends in the Senate, we will fight back against that rider,” Norton said.
With all these direct and targeted abortion restrictions for women in DC I can’t think of a better argument for granting the District its own representatives with voting power. It’s also a microcosm of the paternalistic approach House Republicans take with all matters relating to women’s health–control, criminalize and coerce women and providers until women can no longer control their own reproductive destinies.
Photo from 401k via flickr.