US House Passes Bill To Ensure Nationwide Birth Control Right
The legislation, which spells out the right to purchase and use contraceptive devices, as well as for healthcare professionals to prescribe them.
The US House of Representatives on Thursday passed a bill ensuring access to birth control nationwide, a month after the Supreme Court struck down federal abortion rights.
The legislation, which spells out the right to purchase and use contraceptive devices, as well as for healthcare professionals to prescribe them, was supported by all the chamber's Democratic lawmakers plus eight Republicans, with 195 of their colleagues voting against it.
However, the measure was likely to stall in the Senate, divided 50-50, where at least 60 votes are needed for most legislation to pass.
The bill was introduced shortly after the conservative-dominated Supreme Court erased nearly 50 years of abortion rights by overturning the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling on June 24.
The decision prompted fears that the high court would then go after other progressive gains, such as the right to contraception after Chief Justice Clarence Thomas signaled in a written opinion that the court should apply the same logic "in future cases."
Even if the view does not seem to be shared by a majority of Supreme Court justices, the possibility has been met with anxiety among Democrats and women's rights activists.
Gearing up for crucial midterm elections in November, the Democratic-led House passed two bills last week guaranteeing the right to abortion and same-sex marriage. But both are unlikely to pass the Senate.