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Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray fought back against a House-passed abortion ban that would severely restrict American women’s access to a full range of reproductive health care. The bill, a politically-driven attempt to roll back Roe v. Wade, is currently being shopped to Republican Senators by right-wing interest groups for introduction in the Senate. It is part of a nationwide strategy that is also taking hold in state legislatures across the country to pass unconstitutional laws that threaten women’s health and lives. Senator Murray was joined by Senators Barbara Boxer, Richard Blumenthal, Tammy Baldwin, and Mazie Hirono, Planned Parenthood staff from across the country and Physicians for Reproductive Health.

“We are here to make one thing abundantly clear. And that is that the extreme, unconstitutional abortion ban that passed the House just weeks ago, and which is being shopped around by the right-wing for sponsors here in the Senate – is a non-starter,” said Senator Murray. “Regardless of who introduces it -- it’s going nowhere.  At a time when workers are being furloughed, student loan rates are going up, and investment in research and education are being slashed – The last thing we need is a politically-driven distraction like this.”

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Senator Murray’s full remarks:

“I first want to thank all of the Planned Parenthood staff who are joining us today from all over the country. And of course I want to thank all of the other Senators who are with us today.

“We are here to make one thing abundantly clear.  And that is that the extreme, unconstitutional abortion ban that passed the House just weeks ago, and which is being shopped around by the right-wing for sponsors here in the Senate – is a non-starter. Regardless of who introduces it -- it’s going nowhere.

“At a time when workers are being furloughed, student loan rates are going up, and investment in research and education are being slashed – The last thing we need is a politically-driven distraction like this.

“Make no mistake - this is a direct attack on Roe v. Wade.

“It is a bill that is a response to right-wing radio hosts and columnists - and frankly – women’s health is an afterthought under this bill. It is also part of a disturbing pattern that we are seeing in legislatures in states across the country.

“We’ve seen it in Texas where over the past few weeks one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the country is being pushed. We’ve seen it in states threatening to subject women to invasive and degrading ultrasounds. We see it in states like Ohio where provisions that restrict access to abortions for rape survivors are being snuck into law. We see it in the targeting of Planned Parenthood. And of course we have seen it in the House of Representatives – where despite the fact that the House Republican majority ran on jobs and the economy.

“The first three bills they introduced – the first three - were each direct attacks on women’s health in America. Clearly Republicans haven’t learned.

“Despite the fact that in state’s across the country voters rejected one candidate after another who politicized rape and ran on restricting a women’s right to choose -- Republicans are back at it. Despite the fact that they had to bring in a paid pollster to tell the entire House Republican caucus to stop talking about rape, even that message hasn’t sunk in.

“But trust us, we are not going to stop reminding them. We are not going to stop reminding them that women aren’t going to stand for being part of a political plea bargain. That women’s health is not a political bargaining chip. And that women and their doctors are not going to be turned into criminals.

“We’re not going back. Not to the 1950s – where the Republicans rhetoric on this issue seems to be stuck. Or to 1973 when this issue was decided. We’re not going back on settled law.

“This bill, like attacks on Roe v. Wade before it will eventually be lost to history.

“But I can assure it won’t soon be forgotten by millions of American women.”