The Slatest

GOP Women Take Down Their Party’s 20-Week Abortion Ban Bill

Speaker of the House John Boehner and Rep. Renee Ellmers, one of the women who reportedly rejected the Republicans’ proposed abortion bill.  

Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

House Republican leaders just stuck it to the pro-life movement. The Washington Post is reporting that on the eve of the March for Life—a massive annual pro-life protest that comes on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade—top Republicans decided to cancel a planned vote to ban abortions after 20 weeks except in cases of reported rape.

The vote was planned to coincide with the march, but a group of female Republicans successfully pressured the GOP leadership to can it. The Post reported that Reps. Renee Ellmers of North Carolina and Jackie Walorski of Indiana helmed the effort to cancel the vote, citing unnamed sources who suggested that Republican leaders were worried about political damage from female Republicans voting en masse against the bill.


There might be other political consequences for this last-minute move. Though economic issues have robbed social issues of the primacy they held during the George W. Bush presidency, most Republicans are still staunchly conservative when it comes to abortion and same-sex marriage. And they’re not pleased.

“Tomorrow, may I recommend: A.) have your prayer time/Bible study b.) call your Member of Congress,” tweeted Russell Moore, who helms the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, linking to the Post story.

Sen. Ted Cruz’s communications director, Amanda Carpenter, was also critical of the leadership’s decision. “Heartbroken that the House has decided to let down millions of prolifers around the country,” she tweeted.