Last year, Florida Senator Marco Rubio co-sponsored the much-talked-about Blunt amendment — which would have let your boss decide whether women could get access to affordable birth control or not. So it’s really no surprise that Rubio would volunteer to be the lead sponsor on a bill banning abortion after 20 weeks. He clearly believes that anyone but women, whether it’s your boss or a politician, should be responsible for making our personal health care decisions.
Rubio may “feel very strongly about this issue” but what about the women that have to live with the consequences of a decision he wants to make for them?
Rubio’s support for a ban on abortion after 20 weeks is a classic example of politicians thinking they know better than women and their doctors. The reality is that 99% of abortions occur before 21 weeks, but when they do happen, it’s often in heartbreaking and unusual circumstances. In states that have passed laws like this, some women and their families have been put into unimaginable situations — needing to end a pregnancy for serious medical reasons but unable to do so. Women and their doctors need to have every medical option available to them, and what Rubio supports is injecting politicians into deeply personal and private decisions between a woman, her family, and her doctors.
Rubio’s judgment about health care generally is clearly off. Just yesterday he published an op-ed where he called Obamacare — a law that has already benefitted the 27 million women who are receiving preventive care with no additional co-pay — “disastrous.” He’s so out-of-touch that he’s even suggested he’d be willing to shut the government down, joining other Senate Republicans in their promise to not support a continuing resolution or appropriations bill if it includes funding to implement the health care law. Based on what we’ve seen so far, it’s no surprise Rubio would prefer to revert back to the days when women were discriminated against and charged higher premiums than men (sometimes up to 150% more) simply based on their gender, and could be denied coverage based on pre-existing conditions like pregnancy or even having been the victim of domestic violence.
Rubio’s record has shown, time and again, that when faced with the opportunity of trying to limit women’s access to health care and make their personal and private decisions for them, he’ll seize that chance.