Issues

How Did My Representatives Vote?

Your rights and quality of life are at stake every time our elected officials vote on legislation. Since the fall of Roe in June, a lot of legislation has been proposed and voted on all across the country that directly affects your rights. You need to know which legislators are voting against basic human rights, like the ability to control your own body, plan a family and to marry whom you choose.

So, we put together this handy guide to let you know who is voting against your rights, over and over again.

Your Right to Marriage Equality

Your Right to Contraception

Combating Human Trafficking

Capping the Cost of Insulin

Addressing the Baby Formula Shortage

Your Right to Marriage Equality

157 Republican members of Congress voted against marriage equality and protections for same-sex marriage and interracial marriage. 

The Respect for Marriage Act (H.R. 8404) passed in the House on July 19, despite 157 Republicans voting against it. The bill officially repeals the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (which defined marriage as between a man and a woman) and replaces it with federally protected rights and recognitions of marriage which include same-sex and interracial couples. Some of these protections were already established by the U.S. Supreme Court cases Loving v. Virginia (1967), United States v. Windsor (2013), and Obergefell v. Hodges (2015), but this act would officially write them into law. 

Why is this important? Because when the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in his opinion that the Court should also reconsider cases like Obergefell v. Hodges using the same legal argument. This suggests that a politicized Supreme Court could overturn previous rulings that protected marriage equality, just as they overturned our right to access abortions.

Back To Top

Your Right to Contraception

195 Republican members of Congress voted against the right to access contraception. 

The Right to Contraception Act (H.R. 8373) passed in the House on July 21, despite these 195 Republicans voting against it. This bill protects our right as individuals to access contraceptives, and it protects the right of healthcare providers to provide contraception to patients. A week after passing in the House, a companion bill was presented by Senate Democrats for unanimous consent, but it was blocked by Republican Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa). 

You might be asking, why is this important in 2022? Is my access to contraception at risk? Well, it could be. The 1965 U.S. Supreme Court case Griswold v. Connecticut was the Court’s first ruling recognizing a constitutional right to contraception. When the Supreme Court recently overturned Roe v. Wade, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in his opinion that the Court should also reconsider Griswold v. Connecticut using the same legal argument. So yes, while we currently have legal access to contraceptives based on legal precedent, now would be a great time to get it written into law so that it cannot also be overturned by a politicized Supreme Court.

Additionally, we’d like to point out to these 195 Republicans what data and research make clear … that access to contraception is a key factor in reducing abortion rates. If Republicans truly want to help reduce abortion rates, they should be supporting access to contraception.

Back To Top

Combating Human Trafficking

20 Republican Members of Congress voted against the reauthorization of a bill that combats human trafficking.

The Frederick Douglass Trafficking Victims Prevention and Protection Reauthorization Act of 2022 (H.R. 6552) was passed by Congress on July 26. It reauthorizes funding for various federal programs that combat human trafficking and prevent exploitation of trafficking victims. These programs have been funded with bipartisan support since 2000. It isn’t entirely clear why these 20 Republicans did not support this reauthorization, although one of them, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) is himself currently under federal investigation for sex trafficking allegations involving a minor.   

Back To Top

Capping the Cost of Insulin

43 Republican Senators voted against a $35 cap on insulin for patients with private insurance.

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (H.R. 5376) was a broad piece of legislation signed into law on August 16 that will do a number of things to reduce our federal deficit, fight inflation, lower individual’s healthcare and energy costs, expand Medicare, create jobs, fight climate change, help families and small businesses, and more. However, in negotiating its provisions, 43 Senate Republicans voted against including a $35 cap on insulin prices for patients with private insurance. 

About seven million Americans take insulin daily to manage their diabetes, and insulin costs eight times more in the U.S. than it does in 32 other high-income nations. The insulin cap is a broadly popular idea with voters. To us, it seems like voting to lower costs and improve the health of constituents would be a good idea for Senators, especially in an election year, but these 43 must have other priorities.

Back To Top

Addressing the Baby Formula Shortage

192 Republican members of Congress voted against FDA funding for baby formula during a nationwide shortage. 

Okay, so technically this happened before the fall of Roe, but it is too important not to talk about here. In May of this year, the U.S. was facing a nationwide shortage of baby formula. This was a scary and stressful time for mothers across the U.S. who felt helpless and desperate to ensure that their babies had adequate nutrition. The House introduced the Infant Formula Supplemental Appropriations Act (H.R. 7790) to provide emergency funding to the FDA to address the formula shortage, to help prevent future shortages, and to make sure that dangerous, fraudulent products did not enter the U.S. market. While the bill passed the House, 192 Republicans voted against it (under the urging of House Republican leadership), blaming President Biden for the shortage without supporting this solution. How can you have government mandated pregnancies without supporting the babies once they are born?

Back To Top

With midterm elections this November, it is important to know how your Representatives are voting, and if their votes are in your best interests. We hope this guide helps you make that choice!