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Leader Rodgers Floor Remarks on Women’s Access to Contraception


Washington, D.C. — Energy and Commerce Committee Republican Leader Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) delivered the following remarks about H.R. 8373, the Democrats’ “Payouts for Planned Parenthood Act.”


“Every woman’s potential journey to motherhood is different and I support their access to contraception.

“However, this legislation [H.R. 8373] has a lot of problems.

“Democrats introduced it on a Friday and debated it for the first time on Monday at the Rules Committee and since then, they’ve had to introduce multiple amendments to address their own failures to draft good policy.

“This is not how we build trust in solutions we bring before the People’s House.

“If Democrats came to me and asked to work together on a bill, I would have been happy to roll up my sleeves and work with them.

“For years, Republicans on both sides of the Capitol have led on solutions to allow for great access to safe and effective contraception including to make it available over-the-counter.

“Right now, Congresswoman Ashley Hinson and Congresswoman Stephanie Bice are leading on these bills.”


“Unfortunately, today, rather than work with us, Democrats are again spreading fear and misinformation to score political points.

“And they are doing it with a very poorly drafted bill, that opens the door further to their extreme abortion-on-demand agenda.

“It should be called the ‘Payouts for Planned Parenthood Act.’

“It would send more taxpayer dollars to Planned Parenthood, freeing up more funds for them to provide abortions and end vulnerable lives.

“This bill endangers the health and safety of women.

“It allows Planned Parenthood and abortion providers to prescribe – both on and off-label – drugs to be used for abortions without any restrictions.

“Additionally, and again, despite many drafts, Democrats included a definition of contraception that is not limited to FDA-approved products.

“The term contraception is defined as ‘an action taken to prevent pregnancy, including the use of contraceptives or fertility-awareness based methods, and sterilization procedures.’

“This means that the bill creates an individual right to engage in contraception, which can include the use of FDA approved products, but also any other action taken to prevent pregnancy, including non-approved products.

“H.R. 8373, will also continue President Joe Biden’s war on religious liberty and conscience protections.

“It would force health providers to violate their religion and sincerely held beliefs to provide contraception and perform sterilizations, including on minors.

“It would also force organizations like the Little Sisters of the Poor to violate their religion and provide contraception.

“For all the fearmongering Democrats are spreading about other Supreme Court precedents being threatened where is the respect for the Little Sisters of the Poor and their victory for their constitutionally guaranteed religious freedom?”


“The unfortunate reality today is that this bill goes too far and defies the most basic safeguards meant to protect women and children.

“Women deserve the truth. Not more fear and misinformation that forces an extreme agenda on the American people.

“Again, Republicans have led to make birth control available over the counter.

“In 2019, the federal government, under a Republican president, spent $1.8 billion for family planning.

“We have solutions to build on this work to support women.

“Unfortunately, Democrats are conflating the issues of abortion and contraception to promote unrestricted abortion for all nine months of pregnancy.

“Contraception is fundamentally different than abortion, a distinction recognized by the pro-life community, doctors, medical professionals, the science, and in Justice Alito’s Dobbs opinion.

“Abortion intentionally ends a human life. Contraception is to prevent conception.

“There is a clear distinction.

“To suggest otherwise is more fearmongering and scare tactics that are a disservice to women everywhere.

“I urge opposition to H.R. 8373 and urge my colleagues across the aisle to work with us. We welcome the opportunity.

“Rather than rushing another poorly drafted and extreme bill through the People’s House, we can come together to support every woman’s path to a better life and every woman’s different journey to motherhood.”

Health (117th Congress)
Press Release