Patty Murray

07/12/2018 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 07/12/2018 17:34

VIDEO: Senator Murray Warns Trump Supreme Court Nominee Kavanaugh Would Roll Back Reproductive Rights

As several pending cases about women's constitutional right to make their own health care decisions work their way through lower courts, President Trump's alarming nominee for Supreme Court would be a deciding vote against women's reproductive rights

Senator Murray: '…make no mistake: if Judge Kavanaugh is seated on the Supreme Court bench, five men will be empowered to overturn Roe v. Wade and take us back to the days when women didn't have the option of accessing safe, legal abortion'

Senator Murray shared a personal story about her commitment to making sure that women have the right to make their own health care decisions

Judge Kavanaugh was vetted by conservative groups determined to find candidates who met President Trump's campaign promise to nominate judges to the Supreme Court who would overturn Roe v. Wade

ICYMI: Senator Murray Announces Opposition to Supreme Court Nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, Citing President Trump's Extreme Ideological Litmus Test on Roe v. Wade - LINK

***WATCH VIDEO OF SENATOR MURRAY'S REMARKS HERE ***

(Washington, D.C.) - Today, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), top Democrat on the Senate health committee, joined Senate Democrats and women's health advocates to speak about her opposition to President Trump's nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. She highlighted the serious threat his nomination poses to reproductive rights and women's ability to make their own personal health decisions, and called on Republicans to protect women's reproductive rights. Judge Kavanaugh's nomination is particularly alarming in light of his record on reproductive rights and President Trump's repeated promises to appoint a 'pro-life' justice in order to overturn Roe v. Wade and send the decision back to the states. Senator Murray made clear that Judge Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court would not only threaten Roe v. Wade, but endanger a woman's access to contraception and right to make choices about her reproductive health.

Senator Murray has vocally opposed President Trump's nominee, citing his specific declarations to only appoint people to the Supreme Court who passed his extreme, ideological test on overturning Roe v. Wade, undermining women's reproductive care, and more, and has pledged to do everything in her power to fight Judge Kavanaugh's nomination to the Supreme Court, encouraging people throughout the country to raise their voices and make clear their opposition to President Trump's nominee who would roll back rights and freedoms for women, families, workers, and more.

Watch video of Senator Murray's remarks HERE.

Key excerpts from Senator Murray's remarks:

'So I'm going to start my remarks by sharing a story I have-one that made clear to me how important it is that women have the right to control their own health care choices… We didn't have a term for it then, but when I was in college, my close friend was what we would now call date-raped. My friend got pregnant. This was before Roe, and she couldn't find a place to get a safe, legal abortion in our country. She also wasn't wealthy-so she didn't have the means to find one anywhere else. The procedure she did end up having left her, at a very young age, unable to give birth. That's why, when Roe v. Wade did affirm that women in the United States have the constitutional right to make their own reproductive health care decisions, I committed to doing everything I could to ensure that right was protected.'

'Look, President Trump has broken promise after promise. But he has never once wavered in listening to extreme, ideological special interests when it comes to women's access to health care. He promised them he would nominate Supreme Court Justices who would strike down Roe and undermine women's health care access-and he found exactly what he was looking for in Judge Kavanaugh.'

'There is simply too much at stake to sit on the sidelines-and we can defeat this nomination, but only if we do it the way we defeated Trumpcare, because people across the country stood up and said 'not on our watch.' So please speak out however you can-and know that Democrats are fighting right alongside you.'

Full text of Senator Murray's remarks:

'Thank you all for joining us today.

'I'm truly inspired by all the women and families coming forward to explain exactly what this administration's harmful policies would mean in their lives, or in the lives of people they care about. So I'm going to start my remarks by sharing a story I have-one that made clear to me how important it is that women have the right to control their own health care choices, and one that shows how much is at stake as President Trump attempts to put Judge Kavanaugh on the bench and fulfill his promise of striking down Roe v. Wade.

'We didn't have a term for it then, but when I was in college, my close friend was what we would now call date-raped. My friend got pregnant. This was before Roe, and she couldn't find a place to get a safe, legal abortion in our country. She also wasn't wealthy-so she didn't have the means to find one anywhere else. The procedure she did end up having left her, at a very young age, unable to give birth.

'That's why, when Roe v. Wade did affirm that women in the United States have the constitutional right to make their own reproductive health care decisions, I committed to doing everything I could to ensure that right was protected. It is why I've fought extreme Republicans tooth and nail to stop them from defunding Planned Parenthood and from chipping away at women's access to reproductive care at the state level. It is why I have stood with women across the country against each and every attempt by President Trump to restrict women's access to care. And it is why I feel today, with President Trump's nomination of Judge Kavanaugh, that we have never been more at risk of going backward.

'Look, President Trump has broken promise after promise. But he has never once wavered in listening to extreme, ideological special interests when it comes to women's access to health care. He promised them he would nominate Supreme Court Justices who would strike down Roe and undermine women's health care access-and he found exactly what he was looking for in Judge Kavanaugh.

'Judge Kavanaugh has supported indefinitely blocking a young woman from having an abortion. He determined that a woman's boss shouldn't even have to submit paperwork to help her get contraceptive coverage outside of work, if that boss doesn't think women should use birth control. He is the ideological dream pick for President Trump, Vice President Pence, and the conservative special interests whose lists they're choosing from, and he would be devastating for women's health and rights in the United States.

'Because make no mistake: if Judge Kavanaugh is seated on the Supreme Court bench, five men will be empowered to overturn Roe v. Wade and take us back to the days when women didn't have the option of accessing safe, legal abortion. Five men will decide that young women will not get to plan their families and achieve their dreams. Five men will decide access to safe abortion in the United States is a privilege for the wealthy, rather than what it should be and has been for decades-the constitutionally protected right of every woman, no matter how much money she has or where she lives. Five men will decide that women cannot be trusted to make their own, most personal health care decisions-and therefore that in a very real sense, women are not treated equally in the United States of America.

'The vast majority of Americans do not want this to happen-they do not want to see women's constitutional rights rolled back. They do not want our daughters and granddaughters to lose constitutional protections women have had for more than four decades.

'So I urge everyone who is listening today to talk to their friends about how much this matters. Share your stories-rally-call-write to your Senators.

'There is simply too much at stake to sit on the sidelines-and we can defeat this nomination, but only if we do it the way we defeated Trumpcare, because people across the country stood up and said 'not on our watch.' So please speak out however you can-and know that Democrats are fighting right alongside you.

'Thank you and now I'll turn it over to Senator Feinstein.'