Alvare Testifies on Capitol Hill

On January 9, Professor Helen Alvaré testified before the House Judiciary Committee’s Constitution and Civil Justice Subcommittee hearing on H.R. 7, “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act.”

In her testimony, Alvaré expressed her belief that neither American lawmakers nor citizens, especially women, understand abortion as a public good meriting funding and that abortion is not a part of any genuine “women’s health” agenda according to the federal government’s own statements.

Alvaré told the subcommittee in closing, “Regular squabbles over federal funding for abortion across myriad pieces of legislation seem to have taken the place of an actual legislative agenda for women’s actual needs. Instead of debating policies supporting women’s care work, or work/family balance, policies addressing paid leave or social security benefits—instead of debating ideas about enabling poor women especially to break the cycle of poverty and nonmarital childbearing—Congress continually debates abortion funding. It is time once and for all to settle the matter of federal funding for abortion, and move on to a real women’s agenda.”

Appearing with Alvaré before the subcommittee were Richard Doerflinger, associate director of the Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and Susan Wood, associate professor of health policy and environmental and occupational health at George Washington University.