Following an unprecedented three-year wave of state legislative attacks on abortion and family planning services, a group of Democratic lawmakers in the House and Senate plan to go on the offensive Wednesday with a historic bill that would make it illegal for states to chip away at women's reproductive rights.The only problem, of course, is that the House of Representatives has a Republican majority that legislates on a platform of bigotry and garbage: "Blumenthal and his colleagues plan to introduce and discuss the bill in a press conference on Wednesday afternoon. While it has a strong chance of passing in the Democrat-controlled Senate, it faces nearly impossible odds in the House."
Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) will introduce the Women's Health Protection Act of 2013, joined by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) and Reps. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio), Judy Chu (D-Calif.) and Lois Frankel (D-Fla.). The bill would prohibit states from passing so-called Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers (TRAP) laws, which impose strict and cost-prohibitive building standards on abortion clinics, require women seeking abortions to have ultrasounds, and create other barriers to abortion access.
...Blumenthal's bill wouldn't automatically overturn states' existing anti-abortion laws, but because federal law trumps state law, it would provide a means to challenge them in court.
That doesn't make proposing this bill nothing but a symbolic act. When the House fails to pass it, that gives Democrats running against Republicans in challengeable districts in 2014 a good argument for ousting Republican incumbents, in an election that will see many seats decided by women.
And apart from the politics of it: It's just the goddamn decent thing to do, irrespective of whether House Republicans will again mobilize to obstruct decency.