Politics

The Dems base wants a simple Roe fight. It becomes complex instead.

“I think if you believe there is a way to codify deer, by all means, let’s do it. But there isn’t. So let’s do what we can to save lives,” Himes said in an interview.

Although House Democrats are considering votes on about half a dozen popular bills on abortion and related social issues raised by the Supreme Court’s ruling last month — starting with two on Friday — the ideas de Himes are not currently on the record, according to a senior Democratic aide. That aligns with many other House and Senate Democrats who are reluctant to do anything other than fully restore the constitutional right to abortion.

It’s a bet for a party that wants to channel voters’ anger on deer as a way to motivate his base, even if there is no consensus on how to build that momentum. Himes’ impassioned push toward his colleagues reflects another sign of Democratic fury that, despite their control of Congress and the White House, is virtually powerless against the Supreme Court.

Still, several Democrats have said they fear Himes’ approach could essentially lower the bar for future action.

“We’re not going to negotiate a woman’s right to choose,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters Thursday when asked if she would consider a lightened bill.

For now, the two chambers are taking slightly different approaches that party leaders say have the same goal: to put Republicans on the record. As the House pursues floor votes on abortion bills that won’t make it to the Senate, the upper house is instead planning weekly attempts to pass abortion rights proposals by voice vote, a process known as requests for unanimous consent.

This strategy allows the Senate to consider a bill without wasting valuable time it needs on nominations and potential legislation. He also recognizes a critical difference between the two Democratic-controlled chambers: The House can pass laws by simple majority while the Senate faces GOP filibuster or may even run out of votes from the 50 Senate Democrats.

The Chamber will take its first post-deer votes on Friday. A bill, from Rep. Lizzie Fletcher (D-Texas), would protect patients who travel for abortions, including those from her home country, where the procedure is now banned outright in most cases. Lawmakers will also vote for the second time in two years on a bill codifying the right to abortion, while expanding access in some cases.

House Democrats plan to use the two bills to hammer Republicans for refusing to back abortion access – criticism they say is already growing with abortions now banned in dozens of states across the country. Several pointed to the public outcry over a 10-year-old rape victim being forced to cross state lines to get an abortion.

Some Democrats, however, say they would still like to see their Senate counterparts do more.

Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa.) pointed to a recent poll she conducted in her district that found 91% of people thought the court ruling was upsetting. deer was a “self-transcendence”. And she said the Senate should hold specific votes on abortion, as should the House: “Shame on them… The American people are demanding this of us.”

Democratic senators endorsed the House approach in the talks, but also defended their own focus on unanimous consent demands, arguing that showdowns on the floor of the chamber could show contrast by forcing a GOP senator to block abortion rights bills. Party senators are quick to note that they have already voted twice this year on their landmark bill to codify deer and expanding abortion access, which was opposed by all Senate Republicans, as well as Sen. Joe Manchin (DW.Va.).

“We already know where Senate Republicans stand on abortion rights: They oppose it,” said Sen. Tina Smith (D-Minn.). “I don’t see how having more roll call votes in the Senate will tell Americans anything they don’t already know.”

Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) diplomatically offered that it’s “always helpful when the House can pass important bills” before bluntly observing, “Senate 50-50 sucks.”

Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), who faces a tough re-election this fall, traveled to the Senate Thursday to seek unanimous passage of her bill to protect the ability to an individual to cross state lines for reproductive care. But Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) continued to block what he described as an attempt “to inflame, raise assumptions.”

While more attempts to pass unanimously are expected, it is not yet known which bills the Democratic senators will try to introduce. One option could be legislation by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) that would ban data brokers from selling health and location information to protect women seeking abortions. A task force of Democratic women senators, led by Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) continues to meet on the issue.

But Warren reiterated to reporters on Thursday that his codification goal deer is to elect two more Democratic senators in November who are willing to drop the Senate’s 60-vote threshold to pass most bills. This strategy, however, only works if Democrats defy historical odds and hang on to the House, which seems highly unlikely given the current political landscape.

“My take on this is to tell everyone, ‘give us two,'” she said.

Other bills the House is likely to pass as part of its abortion rights plan include proposals to protect birth control and same-sex marriage rights, both up for future consideration. by the concurring opinion of Justice Clarence Thomas which accompanied the Supreme Court’s decision on Deer. Democrats also plan to hold a vote on a bill addressing data privacy concerns for women who use fertility or other phone apps that could be used to identify those seeking abortions.

None of these are expected to receive much, if any, support from the GOP, meaning they will have no chance of crossing the Senate’s 60-vote threshold.

Democrats like Himes say that does not reassure their constituents, many of whom believe their party has a duty to find a solution, even if that remedy fails to achieve its goal.

“The theory is that if we start trying to save three of the 20 drowning people, we ignore the other 17. I think that’s a mistake,” the Nutmegger said. “It’s one of those rare times when you have the opportunity to do the right thing, and potentially do a politically wise thing.”

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