To defend the future of reproductive rights, Democrats must look to the past

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The Hyde Amendment, the law prohibiting the use of federal funds to fund abortion, is still in effect with little historical opposition from Democrats (Obama has refused to commit to a federal option that would cover abortions, noting the “tradition, historically, of not funding” abortions with federal money). President Bill Clinton proliferated the idea, repeated by generations of Democrats, that abortions should be “safe, legal, and rare.” More recently, when President Trump promised name anti-deer Supreme Court justices, Democrats failed to make abortion a central part of their opposition to Amy Coney Barrett, instead of concentrating about his vague opinions on the Affordable Care Act.

Even when it became clear that the court was about to overturn Deer, the democratic leadership supported a pro-life representative in his primary against a pro-choice progressive, and President Biden struck a deal with Mitch McConnell that would have placed an anti-abortion judge on the federal bench. In many ways, the Democratic Party’s timid support for deer can be seen as a mere convenience: by enshrining the right to abortion in the Constitution, the Court had removed the issue from the political sphere, absolving Democrats of any responsibility to aggressively defend the right to abortion. (The Biden administration appears to be avoiding even using the word Abortion absolutely.)

Of course, the main blame for the grim reality facing American women today lies with the Supreme Court.the far-right majority and the Republicans who nominated them. But future generations will wonder why the left spent the decades following the deer decision reducing the idea of ​​abortion to a mere medical procedure protected by fragile legal precedent instead of affirming that reproductive freedoms are an integral part of other fundamental rights that deserve to be defended with the full weight of Democratic Partythe political power. At the end of the day, deer Gone are the days of hiding behind it like an untouchable precedent. It’s high time for Democrats to embrace Blackmun’s central innovation: Abortion is not just an important medical procedure, but a necessary part of the constitutional guarantee of freedom for every woman.

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