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RNC Night 4: Brace Yourself for Trump and his Congressional Enablers 

PLANNED PARENTHOOD VOTES
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, August 27, 2020
CONTACT: Planned Parenthood Votes Media Office; 212-261-4433; [email protected]
Planned Parenthood Votes Pressroom


Washington, DC — It’s the final night of the Republican National Convention and we have already seen enough. The lies, division, and baseless attacks on sexual and reproductive freedom have been on full display for three straight nights, in addition to the administration’s revisionist history on its failed response to the COVID-19 pandemic. But tonight, Donald Trump is giving the keynote speech, which will undoubtedly feature more disinformation, blanketed in racism, misogyny, and bigotry. Despite Trump’s pathetic attempts to rewrite his record, people across the country and the globe know the truth. They have been living in Donald Trump’s America, where reproductive rights, civil rights, voting rights, human dignity, and more are constantly under attack. 

Trump didn’t uproot constitutional norms and rights on his own. His top two enablers in Congress, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, have aided and abetted his corrupt, anti-health agenda from the start. McConnell’s zeal to confirm federal judges with records hostile to reproductive rights, and their combined efforts to champion Trump’s xenophobic, homophobic and racist agenda landed them speaking roles in tonight’s lineup. 

While Trump and his cronies in Congress are speaking tonight, it’s imperative to remember that their views do not speak for the American people. Here’s what you need to know about tonight’s lineup: 

Statement from Jenny Lawson, executive director, Planned Parenthood Votes:

"Tonight, Donald Trump is sure to do what he does best: Traffic in fear and division. He will lie about his failure to handle COVID-19, lie about his ‘efforts’ to help communities of color, and lie about sexual and reproductive health. The truth is, he has spent four years relentlessly attacking access to health care, including safe, legal abortion. His administration is asking the Supreme Court to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which would, just for starters, gut access to sexual and reproductive care and eliminate protections for millions of people living with pre-existing conditions. His policies are exacerbated by spineless Congressional leaders like Senator Mitch McConnell and Representative Kevin McCarthy, who have spent the past four years pushing Trump’s attacks on our health and rights while enabling his racist, bigoted stances through their silence. The country has had enough. Planned Parenthood Votes--backed by our largest electoral program ever--is ready to fight back and kick out Trump and his allies this November.” 

President Donald Trump 

  • For a decade, Trump has repeatedly bragged about opposing safe, legal abortion. 

    • Trump said women who seek abortions should be subject to “some form of punishment.”

    • Donald Trump is the first sitting president in U.S. history to address the annual March for Life anti-abortion rally in person. 

    • While on the campaign trail, Trump called for a nationwide abortion ban.

    • On the campaign trail and while in office, Trump repeatedly spread fear mongering, medically inaccurate information about abortion later in pregnancy, claiming that doctors were “ripping the baby out of the womb … on the final day.”

    • Trump vowed to veto any legislation that “weakens the protection of human life.”

    • While in office, Trump has brought a large cohort of anti-abortion administrative officials into his administration.

  • Trump is the first U.S. president to seek to completely "defund" Planned Parenthood in his budget proposals, seeking to bar people in all federal programs from seeking care at Planned Parenthood health centers. It is just one of many ways the Trump-Pence administration has tried to block patients from accessing preventive care at Planned Parenthood health centers.

  • Trump has done everything in his power to overturn Roe v. Wade, asserting it was “wrongly decided” and packing the Supreme Court with justices who he believed would gut the constitutional protections for abortion access. 

    • Trump has packed the federal courts across the country with over 200 judges who have track records of restricting reproductive rights, including Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court, both of whom have long records of opposing abortion. 

    • Trump’s campaign pledged that Trump “will change the law through his judicial appointments and allow the states to protect the unborn” as president. 

  • The administration issued rules to allow employers and universities to refuse to cover birth control if they have religious or “moral” objections to contraception, undermining a critical component of the Affordable Care Act. These rules were just upheld up by the Supreme Court. 

  • Trump issued a "gag rule" that denied people access to full reproductive health information and forced Planned Parenthood health centers and other providers out of the nation’s program focused on affordable reproductive health care. 

  • As one of his first acts in office, Trump reinstated and strengthened the global gag rule, which prevents foreign organizations receiving U.S. global health assistance from providing information, referrals, or services for legal abortion or advocating for access to abortion services in their country — even with their own money.

  • The Trump administration announced a major overhaul to Medicaid, paving the way for states to slash Medicaid funding and jeopardize health care coverage for people with low incomes, including reproductive and sexual health care.

 

Ben Carson

  • As a candidate for president, Carson compared abortion to slavery and said he would like to see Roe v. Wade overturned. Carson also defended then-candidate Trump when he called for women to be punished for seeking abortion care.

  • Last month, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), under Carson’s leadership, released a proposed rule removing nondiscrimination protections for transgender and gender nonconforming indiviudals in single-sex shelters and certain housing facilities. 

 

Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)

  • McConnell has been instrumental in helping Trump pack the courts with more than 200 judicial nominees, many of whom are hostile to sexual and reproductive health. McConnell helped steer the confirmations of Trump’s anti-sexual and reproductive health Supreme Court Justices Kavanaugh and Gorsuch. He also has reportedly been urging judges to step down in order to help Trump pack even more extremists on our courts.

  • McConnell voted multiple times to overturn the Affordable Care Act putting sexual and reproductive health coverage at risk, including protections for more than 1.7 million Kentuckians with pre-existing conditions -- like asthma, cancer, or diabetes.

  • McConnell has voted 10 times todefundPlanned Parenthood, blocking access to health care for more than 6,500 Kentuckians who receive care -- like STI testing, cancer screenings, and birth control -- from Planned Parenthood health centers every year. 

  • McConnell made no secret of it -- he hopes the Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark decision which established a national right to safe and legal abortion.

 

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR)

  • Cotton voted multiple times to overturn the Affordable Care Act putting sexual and reproductive health coverage at risk, including protections for more than 1.1 million Arkansas residents with pre-existing conditions -- like asthma, cancer, or diabetes.

  • Cotton has voted six times todefund” Planned Parenthood, blocking access to health care for thousands of Arkansas residents who receive care -- like STI testing, cancer screenings, and birth control -- from Planned Parenthood health centers every year. 

  • Cotton joined his most extreme colleagues and urged the Supreme Court to “reconsider” Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision which established a national right to safe and legal abortion. He even said he believes Roe was “wrongly decided.”

 

Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA)

  • McCarthy voted multiple times to overturn the Affordable Care Act, putting sexual and reproductive health coverage at risk, including protections for more than 16 million Californians with pre-existing conditions -- like asthma, cancer, or diabetes. McCarthy’s even said that if Republicans win the House in 2020, they’ll try yet again to repeal the landmark health care law.

  • McCarthy joined his most extreme colleagues and urged the Supreme Court to “reconsider” Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision which established a national right to safe and legal abortion.

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Planned Parenthood Votes is an independent expenditure political committee registered with the Federal Election Commission.