Dem congresswoman blasts GOP abortion gambit as an outrageous ‘sham’

Updated
By Aliyah Shahid

House Republicans may have failed Thursday to pass a controversial ban on gender-based abortions, but Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney hasn’t let them hear the end of it.

The GOP has “come in with a sweeping agenda that has attacked women’s rights in all kinds of directions,” the New York Democrat told Politics Nation’s Al Sharpton on Thursday, arguing that the right is just trying to throw red meat at their ultra-conservative base.

“It is sweeping in its scope,” she said of the proposal, “appalling in its indifference. And I would say outrageous in its arrogance toward women.” 

Earlier in the day, the House rejected a bill that would have prohibited abortions based on the gender of the fetus, a practice that is problematic in some Asian countries where families prefer boys over girls. 

The right rather dubiously argues that the practice is increasingly common in the U.S., and this measure is necessary to prevent gender-based abortions. Meanwhile, Dems and abortion-rights activists insist the bill limits a woman’s right to choose, could lead to racial profiling of Asian Americans, and is just another salvo in the GOP’s war against women.

Terry O’Neill, the president of the National Organization for Women, blasted Republican Rep. Trent Franks of Arizona, who spearheaded the bill, which fell 30 votes shy of a majority. 

“There is a war against women,” O’Neill said. But women are “watching this hypocrisy and they’re not impressed.” Maloney echoed that sentiment, calling the bill a “sham,” especially because those in favor are Republicans who have previously voted in favor of rolling back women’s access to healthcare. 

Update: On The Last Word, Daily Beast/Newsweek columnist Michelle Goldberg  explains further why the right’s crusade is scary in its implications for choice.

No one is for sex-selective abortions. Feminists have fought hard against this in Asia, where it’s a genuine crisis. In U.S. law right now, you don’t need to tell your doctor why you want an abortion. We don’t have reason-based restrictions where the government gets to decide whether your reason for seeking to end a pregnancy is valid. Once you start putting those things into law, there’s no telling where it ends. (Video)

Al Sharpton and Reproductive Rights

Dem congresswoman blasts GOP abortion gambit as an outrageous 'sham'

Updated