Yesterday House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi made some extremely disappointing statements about abortion rights. She asserted that the Democratic party should stop making abortion rights a non-negotiable, even going so far as to claim that Dems’ stance on the issue was the reason they lost the election.
Pelosi criticized the democratic party for excluding pro-life people, saying,
“Most of those people — my family, extended family — are not pro-choice. You think I’m kicking them out of the Democratic Party?”
She added that the unifying idea in the party should be “our values about working families,” and that by excluding pro-lifers, we cost ourselves the election.
“You know what? That’s why Donald Trump is president of the United States — the evangelicals and the Catholics, anti-marriage equality, anti-choice. That’s how he got to be president.”
Let’s be clear: we are not on board with this. The issue of abortion is about a lot more than simply the ability to end a pregnancy. It’s about a woman’s ability to do what she wants with her body without the government regulating her. And we shouldn’t have to compromise our rights in order to gain what would end up being meaningless support.
The president of advocacy group NARAL Pro-Choice America, Ilyse Hogue, said it best:
“If the Democratic Party is going to gain back power, it can’t go backward, it can’t back down and it can’t trade away these principles.”
The timing of Pelosi’s comments is particularly surprising. Just recently, Senator Bernie Sanders received a huge backlash for campaigning for anti-choice democratic mayoral candidate Heath Mello.
Not to mention that Pelosi had the gall to say that abortion was “a fading issue.” We beg to differ. And we bet a lot of lower-income and/or rural women would agree with us. Access to abortion and women’s access is still an issue and is, unfortunately, not fading.
These comments make Pelosi seem incredibly out-of-touch with the party and we suggest she start listening to her constituents.
Lena Finkel is the Editor and Founder of Femestella. Prior to starting Femestella, she worked at People, InStyle, Tiger Beat, and Sesame Workshop (aka Sesame Street). She loves all things Real Housewives and The Challenge. When she’s not busy binge-watching TV, you can find her taking an absurd amount of photos of her tuxedo cat Tom.