WASHINGTON, DC — Today, the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions will hold confirmation hearings for California Attorney General Xavier Becerra to be Secretary of Health and Human Services, and the Senate Finance Committee will hold its confirmation hearing tomorrow. Becerra, who would be the first Latino to hold this position, is an experienced leader with a long record of advocating for sexual and reproductive rights. His nomination is a positive indication of the Biden administration’s commitment to health care and reproductive freedom.
Statement from Alexis McGill Johnson, president, Planned Parenthood Action Fund:
“Xavier Becerra is a fierce advocate for health care and reproductive rights who must be confirmed as our next HHS Secretary without delay. The health care issues facing the country are daunting: managing the nation’s response to COVID-19, combating racial health disparities, and more. Becerra’s experience, leadership, and dedication to racial equity make him the right person to navigate us through these crises. He also understands that reproductive health care — including abortion — is health care, and must be treated as such by our elected leaders and top health officials. The Senate must vote to confirm Becerra and allow him to immediately begin working on behalf of the American people.”
Statement from Jodi Hicks, president and CEO, Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California:
“Xavier Becerra has been boldly protecting and expanding access to health care in California for decades. As the Spanish-speaking son of a Mexican immigrant mother and a working-class father, he shares the background of many of California’s communities and communities across America. As the country faces historic challenges — the COVID-19 pandemic, an economic crisis, and a reckoning with systemic racism, and more — his background, managerial experience, policy expertise, and leadership skills will help guide and heal the nation. Becerra’s long been a champion for health care access, gender equality, and racial equity in California, and now he can take that same dedication and leadership to the national level. We urge the Senate to act swiftly to confirm Becerra: He’s the leader Californians have relied on for more than 25 years, and he’s the leader the nation needs now.”
Throughout his decades in public service, Becerra has consistently fought to protect and expand health care access for all people, including:
- Leading an effort from state attorney generals to protect the Affordable Care Act; as a member of Congress he helped draft and pass the ACA
- Fighting back against the domestic gag rule on Title X, the nation’s only dedicated federal program for affordable reproductive health care
- Challenging the Trump administration’s discriminatory Health Care Refusal Rule
- Challenging a Trump administration policy that discourages immigrants from accessing safety net programs, including health care
For more information on Xavier Becerra’s distinguished record on protecting and expanding health care, read the interested parties memo from Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California.
Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational, advocacy and electoral activity, including grassroots organizing, legislative advocacy, and voter education.