September 14, 2006: Democrats Introduce Legislation to Reduce Abortions
(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - A coalition of pro-life and pro-choice Democrats has come together in an unprecedented effort to pass comprehensive new legislation that would significantly reduce the number of abortions in America. Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), a member of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), a member of the Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus, are the lead sponsors of the bill, which aims to reduce abortions by preventing unintended pregnancies, supporting pregnant women, and assisting new parents.
"Solving problems often requires us to build new coalitions," said Congressman Tim Ryan. "Democrats are united in our efforts to significantly reduce the number of abortions in America by broadening the stagnant political debate that too often accompanies this issue."
Democrats believe that the root-causes of abortion can and must be addressed. There are still 1.3 million abortions performed in America each year-half of all unintended pregnancies. One in five U.S. pregnancies ends in abortion, and nearly one of every five abortions in America are performed on teenagers.
The Ryan-DeLauro legislation contains over 20 innovative and proven policy initiatives including expanded access for contraception for low-income woman, adoption tax credits, increased funding for health care for low-income mothers and children, nurse home visits for new mothers, grants for creative approaches to teen pregnancy and unintended pregnancy reduction, and funding for day-care programs and child-care centers on college campuses.
"I truly believe that Democrats have always been the party willing to take on the tough issues-the issues of the uninsured, the middle-class, and the disadvantaged." Ryan added. "I am honored to introduce a new and powerful policy that will reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and abortions in America, help women bear healthy children and support new parents."
The legislation was unveiled Thursday at a news conference in Washington where Ryan and DeLauro were joined by cosponsors Reps. Rahm Emanuel (IL), Stephanie Herseth (SD), James Langevin (RI), and Harold Ford Jr. (TN). Rachel Laser of Third Way, a progressive think tank, and Sister Sharon Dillon of the Catholic Alliance for the Common Good also spoke on behalf of the bill. Other original cosponsors include Reps. Marcy Kaptur (OH), Ted Strickland (OH), Anna Eshoo (CA), John Larson (CT), and James Clyburn (SC).