First there was Rep. Jackie Speier. Rep. Chris Smith, a Republic from New Jersey, took the floor to read aloud a description of a second-trimester abortion procedure. Rep. Speier stood up immediately after he spoke.
"I really planned to speak about something else. But the gentleman from New Jersey just put my stomach in knots. Because I'm one of those women he spoke about just now."
Brave, honest, amazing.
Then there was Rep. Gwen Moore. From Salon's summary:
[L]ate Thursday night, Georgia Republican Rep. Paul Broun had trotted out the old canard about Planned Parenthood being a bunch of eugenically motivated abortion enthusiasts, pointing out that "there are more black babies killed through abortion proportionally than there are white babies or any other colored babies."
Responding to Broun's deep concern for the well-being of black babies (a concern that apparently ends when those black babies grow up to need breast exams or cervical screenings) Wisconsin Democrat Gwen Moore said, "I know a lot about having black babies. I’ve had three of them. And I had my first one ... at the ripe old age of 18.
An unplanned pregnancy."
These are not men talking about lives, decisions, and responsibilities that will never ever be theirs. These are women baring difficult parts of their lives to bring some honesty and reality to the discussion. Thank you Congresswomen - for being our voices of women's real, lived experiences in the U.S. Congress, and for standing up for everyone's access to affordable care.