Home » Republican ‘War on Women’ Is a Media Myth

Republican ‘War on Women’ Is a Media Myth

Republicans have been accused of waging a "war on women" for several election cycles now. But is there any truth to this claim?

by Narges Mohammadi

Democrats and their supporters in the media are leaning into an election-year fear-mongering campaign about Republican “bans” on reproductive rights. In their redefinition, any limitation on abortion throughout pregnancy, even in the third trimester, is a “ban.” Even more disingenuous, Democrats have also accused Republicans of threatening birth control and, most recently, IVF.

Welcome to the political silly season. Both parties have people on their fringes who take extreme positions, but that doesn’t make it the party’s position or long-term objective. And both parties have political consultants who know how to misconstrue the intention behind certain pieces of legislation.

When the Left claims that Republicans threaten access to contraception, it points to Republican opposition to mandates and bills that force some people (employers, taxpayers) to pay for other people’s contraception.

Republicans did not support Obamacare’s requirement that employers—including Catholic nuns—pay for birth control coverage. Nor did they support federal legislation that would have enshrined a statutory right to birth control (and served as a Trojan Horse to legally protect the sterilization of gender-confused youth). And state lawmakers in Idaho prohibited the use of public funds for forms of emergency contraception that many view as abortifacient.

News flash: Even for things they like, Republicans generally are not keen to impose mandates or manufacture new “rights.” There’s a big difference between “banning” birth control and limiting public funding for it. There’s no evidence that Republicans want to ban or restrict access to birth control. On the contrary, the GOP has led on efforts to make it easier to get birth control over the counter.

As far as IVF is concerned, the Alabama Supreme Court case has also been widely misrepresented. This case started not as an effort to ban or restrict IVF, but as the result of absurd negligence by an IVF facility that led to the pro-IVF plaintiffs’ loss of their embryos. The court ruled that the parents lost something more than property—a perspective many who have been through IVF sympathize with. Democrats sprang on this case as a “gotcha!” opportunity to tie Republican and pro-life efforts to protect unborn babies to an “attack on IVF.”

Here’s the thing: No state—and no federal legislation—has targeted IVF in an attempt to ban the practice. There are pending so-called “personhood” bills in 13 states, which would recognize embryos as people, as would the federal Life at Conception Act, which just over half of Republicans in Congress support. But it’s unlikely that such state-level legislation will pass without including exceptions for IVF, as the Senate version of the federal bill does. Furthermore, many Republicans, from presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump to Rep. Anna Paulina Luna (R-Fla.), who has sponsored the Right to Try IVF Act, have made their support for IVF clear.

Even so, Republicans face an uphill battle in the media, where articles about these topics are often written before any GOP comment can be made. While Republicans poll evenly with Democrats among married women, young single women seem to be especially vulnerable to the Left’s fear-mongering on these issues.

What these young women should know is that, far from waging a war on women, Republicans are in many areas waging a war for women and the things we care about. For one thing, it is Republicans—not Democrats—who are acting to protect women’s sports and women’s spaces (including domestic violence shelters and women’s prisons) from invasion by men.

And Republicans are pushing back against the Biden administration’s attack on flexible work arrangements. Millions of women struggle to navigate today’s challenging economic climate—a product of Democrats’ inflationary economic policy—by pursuing flexible income opportunities as independent contractors. Although this issue hasn’t gotten the same media attention as abortion, it will affect more women, and women should know that the Biden Department of Labor is making it harder to work independently under new rules that will eliminate these opportunities. Not very pro-choice of them, is it?

Similarly underreported is the Biden administration’s effort to eliminate the popular au pair program through draconian regulations. Republicans oppose this and other efforts to push working moms into one-size-fits-all childcare programs and to eliminate the jobs that au pairs (most of whom are female) presently enjoy. Instead, Republicans want to empower women to make the best choices for themselves, and for their children, both for child care and for school.

It’s an election year, and both parties will be at war for women’s votes. But a closer look at the actions of Republicans shows they aren’t working in opposition to women’s interests. They are working to make sure we have choices and opportunities, not just when it comes to family planning, but to our work, education, child care, and beyond.

Source: Newsweek

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