Schumer plans vote on 'constitutional right to contraception' in bid to protect Senate Democrat majority

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., is planning a vote on the “constitutional right to contraception,” in an election-year move aimed at protecting Democrats’ control of the Senate.

The majority leader is expected to fast-track a vote next month on the Right to Contraception Act. Though it likely won’t pass with most Republicans opposing the bill, Schumer wants to put senators in the opposing party on record on contraception and birth control access during an election year, The New York Times reported.

The bill’s language says it “sets out statutory protections for an individual’s right to access and a health care provider’s right to provide contraception and related information.”

“This is a clarifying political vote that will put every Republican on record as to whether or not they believe in a constitutional right to contraception,” the bill’s lead sponsor, Sen. Edward Markey, D-Mass., told the New York Times.


Senate Majority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer speaks during a news conference in front of the U.S. Capitol on May 21, 2024. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Senate Republicans last year blocked Markey’s effort to pass a version of the bill without debate, arguing the legislation could also apply to pills that induce abortion, not simply birth control.

Replaying strategy used in 2022 after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Senate Democrats are hammering Republicans on not only abortion, but birth control and contraception access.

Schumer hosted a press conference outside the Capitol on Tuesday with Planned Parenthood doctors dedicated to discussing “how Republican abortion bans are hurting health care providers and worsening access to care for millions of people.” He claimed that “far right Republicans have been working systematically to dismantle a woman’s fundamental right to choose, and they’ve been working at it for decades.””So today we’re here to say loud and clear, Democrats stand with women, and with our nation’s health care providers,” Schumer said. “We will never, ever stop fighting against these Republican attacks. We will never, ever stop fighting to take back these rights from the far-right extremists who want to impose their views on the country that overwhelmingly do not agree with them.”

The planned vote comes after Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, a Republican, earlier this month vetoed a contraception access measure that had been approved by the Democrat-controlled state legislature, stating at the time, “I support access to contraception. However, we cannot trample on the religious freedoms of Virginians.” He said contraception access is already protected under the Constitution.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and President Biden during a Jewish American Heritage Month reception in the Rose Garden of the White House on Monday, May 20, 2024. (Samuel Corum/Sipa/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

TRUMP SAYS ABORTION SHOULD BE DECIDED BY THE STATES, ‘WILL OF THE PEOPLE’Schumer on Tuesday also went after former President Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee, directly.

“The most extreme elements of the Republican Party have made clear their mission to eliminate this freedom of choice,” Schumer said. “And we can’t forget that Donald Trump said just a few weeks ago that he was ‘proud’ to be the person who paved the way to overturn Roe. Make no mistake, he’ll be at it again if, God forbid, he becomes President. So that was the word President Trump used, ‘proud.’ He’s not even hiding it. So with the Dobbs decision, they opened the floodgates for draconian and cruel bans on women’s choice all across America.”

Former President Trump speaks to the media during his trial at Manhattan Criminal Court on May 21, 2024. Trump said he will never advocate for birth control restrictions. (Curtis Means-Pool/Getty Images)

But on Tuesday, Trump outlined his stance in a post on TRUTH Social, making clear that he will not look to restrict access to contraceptives if he regains the presidency.”I HAVE NEVER, AND WILL NEVER ADVOCATE IMPOSING RESTRICTIONS ON BIRTH CONTROL, or other contraceptives,” Trump wrote. “This is a Democrat fabricated lie, MISINFORMATION/DISINFORMATION, because they have nothing else to run on except FAILURE, POVERTY, AND DEATH. I DO NOT SUPPORT A BAN ON BIRTH CONTROL, AND NEITHER WILL THE REPUBLICAN PARTY!”

Earlier, the Times had harped on an interview Trump did with KDKA, a CBS affiliate in Pittsburgh, in which he did not make clear what his position was on the issue.Asked if he supported “restrictions on a person’s right to contraception” on Monday, Trump told KDKA, “We’re looking at that, and I’m going to have a policy on that very shortly.”

“And I think it’s something that you’ll find interesting, and it’s another issue that’s very interesting, but you will find it, I think, very smart. I think it’s a smart decision,” he said.Pressed at the time on whether he supported restrictions, Trump added, “You know, things really do have a lot to do with the states, and some states are going to have different policy than others.”

Danielle Wallace is a reporter for Fox News Digital covering politics, crime, police and more. Story tips can be sent to [email protected] and on Twitter: @danimwallace. 

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