Memo to the Obama Administration: You Can't Be Pro-Choice Unless You Support Equal Access

June 15th, 2011

Categories: abortion restrictions, economic justice, health care reform, Hyde Amendment, Medicaid, TakeAction, unfair laws

Over the past two months, members of the Obama Administration have issued statements that show a continuing need for education about the damaging impact of federal funding bans on women’s lives, and the positive role that the federal government must play in helping women to obtain the abortion care they need. The Network, along with Catholics for Choice and more than 50 allies, reached out to Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius. Click here to read our letter to Secretary Sebelius.

Our memo to the Obama Administration appears in today's RH Reality Check:


If recent statements are any indication, the Obama Administration would very much like to rewrite what it means to be “pro-choice.” The Administration continues to claim that it supports the right of a woman to make her own decision about whether and when to have a child. But it turns out that the Administration only stands firm when that woman has economic resources.

It’s more than a contradiction in terms and much more than a “compromise” to deny access to abortion care to a low-income woman. The 120,000 women who called our abortion funding hotline for help last year can tell you what it really means. Not having enough food for the children you already have. Having the electricity shut off because you need that money to pay for an abortion. Selling your car, even though you need it to get to work. Not being able to return to college next semester.

Yes, we understand that many in Congress would like to end the legal status of abortion altogether. Because funding restrictions are a step toward that goal, capitulation will only embolden our opponents and get us even more onerous obstacles blocking a low-income woman’s path to an abortion.

The reproductive rights, health, and justice communities will fight – until we win – for the ability of every single woman to make the decision she feels is best for herself and her family. We will keep working until we have restored federal Medicaid coverage of abortion – and ensured it is once again available on the same terms as coverage for women continuing a pregnancy. Because nothing less will guarantee that a woman can make this fundamental decision for herself. 

Click here to continue reading at RH Reality Check.


Click here to tell President Obama: You can't be pro-choice unless you support equal access.