Women's health advocates swarmed Olympia on Monday for a reproductive-rights lobby day, wearing pink T-shirts and dressing up as a giant pack of birth control pills dancing with the Statue of Liberty, and rallying hard for Washington State's groundbreaking Reproductive Parity Act. Cienna's covered the RPA before; basically, it would require insurance companies to cover abortions if they cover maternity care.
The press releases are now flying fast and furious: The RPA just passed in the state house, and will move on to the senate. Governor Inslee says:
Today's vote in the House is a big step forward in guaranteeing women's access to a full range of reproductive health care services. As I begin signing bills next week, I expect the Senate to follow the House's lead so the RPA can be among those I have the honor of signing into law. The Senate should not shut the door of democracy when it comes to women's health care.
Meanwhile, Fuse Washington crows: "Now that the full state House has approved the Reproductive Parity Act (HB 1044/SB 5798) by a 53-43 vote, the fate of the bill is up to Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom."
Dear lord, our wombs are in these hands? Actually, despite his unholy alliance with state Republicans, Tom is plenty supportive of reproductive rights. I just called his office, and they assured me that "he's supportive" of the RPA. On Monday, he signaled his support to the reproductive-rights lobbyists at the rally, saying, "I want to make sure my 17-year-old daughter has all of her reproductive health care covered." But it's unclear if the bill has a real chance in this year's senate, and his office wasn't able to clarify how, exactly, he might support its passage.