At the National Latina Institute, we work to ensure that access to abortion remains a major component of the reproductive justice movement.
We also realize that not all will agree with abortion. This is true for all the Republican presidential candidates, for the exception of Rudolph Giuliani who holds pro-choice views. So far, the primarily questions around reproductive health and rights has been “are you pro-choice or pro-life” and “will you try to overturn Roe V. Wade”? Automatically, the answers will tend to be “pro-life” and “yes,” respectively. But, what about other reproductive health and rights issues?
In this August 17th commentary at Newsweek.com, Eleanor Clift suggests that reporters and debate moderators should stop asking candidates about their views on abortion, and start asking questions about family planning. Since the candidates are targeting specific voters, their statements on abortion are unlikely to change.
However, what will happen if people start asking specific questions, such as “do you think it’s OK for a pharmacy to refuse to fill a woman’s prescription for birth-control pills based on the personal views of the pharmacist? Should hospital emergency rooms be allowed to withhold information from a rape victim about the morning-after pill, which can prevent a pregnancy if it’s taken soon enough after the assault? Do you support age-appropriate sex education[…]?” Questions like these can lead to more than just a “yes or no” answer and more genuine responses as to their position on women’s right to bodily autonomy and reproductive choice.