The House on Thursday passed legislation broadly along party lines that would federally protect an individual’s access to contraception and ensure health care providers are not penalized for prescribing it, a response to the ruling. of the Supreme Court last month that struck down federal protections for access to abortion.
Eight Republicans voted with all Democrats — far fewer than the 47 Republicans who earlier this week joined Democrats in voting to federally protect same-sex and interracial marriage. The final vote on Thursday was 228 to 195.
This week, House Democrats prioritized passing legislation that would federalize protections that many Americans consider established law, arguing that the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe vs. Wade signals that other individual liberties are being attacked by Republicans. The votes also serve as a final argument ahead of Democrats’ midterms, who hope to create a stark contrast to the GOP by portraying the party as extreme on social issues that are broadly popular with voters.
Support for marriage equality from House Republicans on Tuesday spurred the Senate into action, prompting Democratic leaders to change their tune and announce they will soon consider the bill in the Senate. But it’s unclear whether the Senate will also discuss contraception legislation.
This is a developing story and will be updated.