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Senate Republicans Block the Right to IVF Act

Last week, the Southern Baptist Convention, the nation’s largest Protestant denomination representing 13 million Americans, formally came out against in vitro fertilization and requested the government take action to stop it.


Senator Tammy Duckworth, Democrat of Illinois, sponsored the bill that Democrats sought to push forward.Credit...Eric Lee/The New York Times
Senator Tammy Duckworth, Democrat of Illinois, sponsored the bill that Democrats sought to push forward. Credit: Eric Lee

Their resolution against IVF urged the denomination’s members “to advocate for the government to restrain actions inconsistent with the dignity and value of every human being, which necessarily includes frozen embryonic human beings.” 


In response to the threat against IVF access, the Senate put the Right to IVF Act to a vote to immediately protect IVF access across the country. Senate Republicans blocked legislation that would make it a right nationwide for women to access in vitro fertilization and other fertility treatments.


The bill needed 60 votes in order to move forward, meaning nine Republicans would have needed to break ranks and vote with Democrats. The final vote was 48-47, with only two Republicans defecting: Sens. Susan Collins (Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (Alaska).


Sen. Tammy Duckworth, a military veteran who has used the fertility treatment to have her two children, had championed the bill.


“As a mom who struggled with infertility for years, as a parent who needed IVF to have my two beautiful little girls, all I can say to my Republican colleagues in this moment is, ‘How dare you,’” Duckworth said following the vote.


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