Weekly Update: Women's Museum, ERA & Repro Health
The year I was first elected to Congress was named “The Year of The Woman” – because a record number of women were elected that same year. In 2018, we saw more than 100 women in Congress for the first time in history. Just this week, we saw how much we can accomplish with more women leaders in government.
On Tuesday, the Committee on House Administration passed my bill to create a Smithsonian museum dedicated to American women’s history; on Wednesday, the Committee on the Judiciary passed legislation to bring us closer to ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA); and yesterday, I chaired a hearing in the Committee on Oversight and Reform on states’ efforts to block access to reproductive healthcare and abortion.
Earlier this week, I was named to City & State’s The 2019 Nonprofit Power 100 – for which I am deeply humbled. It is an honor to be included on this list of such amazing leaders in the nonprofit world. I was proud to introduce the Nonprofit Relief Act of 2019 to undo the costly new burdens nonprofits are facing as a result of the 2017 GOP tax scam. These organizations should be spending their money on their core charitable missions, not these new, harmful costs.
Building a National Women’s History Museum
On Tuesday, the Committee on House Administration unanimously passed my bill, H.R. 1980, the Smithsonian Women’s History Museum Act. This is an important step as we work to finally create the first comprehensive women’s history museum in the country and tell the other half of our nation’s story.
But creating this museum isn’t just about understanding our past; it’s an investment in our future. In celebrating the achievements of women in history, we’re educating and inspiring the next generation to make history themselves. I’ve worked my entire career to make sure women are represented in the halls of Congress and seats of power. I’m proud that this week, we’ve moved closer to the day when women are celebrated for the history they’ve made and more young women are inspired to make history.
The ERA is in Our Reach
Thanks to incredible ERA advocates in Virginia, less than one year after Republicans blocked the state’s ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment by one vote, a new pro-ERA majority has been elected to the state legislature. This all but guarantees that Virginia will become the needed 38th state to ratify the ERA soon after this new legislature is sworn in this coming January. And Wednesday’s vote in the House Committee on the Judiciary to pass H.J. Res. 79 is an historic step forward.
Now, one hundred years after women won the right to vote with the passage of the 19th Amendment, it is time for women’s full equality to be written into the Constitution. We can and we will make it happen.
Women’s Right to Healthcare Means Nothing Without Access
Watch Acting Chairwoman Maloney’s opening statement here.
cross the country, extreme forces in some state governments are taking draconian steps to violate women’s rights by restricting access to reproductive health services—including abortion. These state actions include prerequisite undue burdens, restrictions, and outrageously invasive procedures for patients seeking abortions.
Let me be clear about what these restrictions are: they are a denial of basic healthcare services that women have a right to receive—no matter where they live.
And so, yesterday, I convened a hearing on these attacks on reproductive rights and we heard from a medical expert, a patient, and advocates about why these state actions are so harmful. You can watch the full hearing here.
Back in 2012, the Committee’s Republican Chairman Darrell Issa also held a hearing on reproductive health. But this was a hearing with an all-male panel of religious leaders who were trying to take away contraceptive coverage for women. They did not invite a single woman to testify on that panel. It was at that hearing that I asked in protest, “Where are the women?"
And so, yesterday, we had a panel full of women – of only women.
It is time to let women speak, and it is time for everyone to listen. It is time for the elected representatives here in Congress and in state houses across the country to protect the right to privacy and a woman’s right to abortion services rather than attack it, undermine it, and try to eliminate it.
As always, your concerns still and always will remain my top priority. Please do not hesitate to email me through my website.
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Carolyn B. Maloney
Member of Congress