Today is the day that history might be made again, and the anniversary of one of the most important historical decisions of the US Supreme Court.
First, the history in the making. We know that the Senate is broken. But through the time-shifting procedural tools at his disposal, Majority Leader Harry Reid has keep the first day of the 113th Congress in session so that they might be able to change the rules by a simple majority, as authorized by the Constitution. AmericaBlog‘s Gaius Publius, who’s been writing about the process and the need to fix what’s broken here joined me on the show this morning for an update on what is expected to happen today.
At the time of this writing, Senator Merkley had already given an impassioned floor speech and Senator Udall said that the Democrats will caucus today over the filibuster reform proposals. Stay tuned and, in the meantime, call your senators as well as Merkley, Udall and tell them to hold firm on ending the silent filibuster and call Reid’s office to demand that he bring the Merkley/Udall bill to a vote!
Today marks the 40th anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade that allowed women the fundamental human right to make one of the most personal and difficult medical decisions – whether to terminate a pregnancy. I discussed the milestone with Tracy Weitz, the Director of the Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health (ANSIRH) program at the Bixby Center For Reproductive Health at UC San Francisco. She was an appointee of former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to the Women’s Health Council, an advisory body to the California Department of Health Services.
She wrote about the politics of the occasion for Huffington Post, and suggested we need to do more in this piece for the American Journal of Public Health. In fact, our discussion about the need for women who’ve had an abortion to begin talking about it made me remember one of the most moving talks I’ve heard on the subject.
Then-congressional candidate Darcy Burner asked women who’ve had an abortion and wanted to “come out of the closet” to do so, then asked the rest of us if we’d stand with them. (Although the whole talk is worth watching, cue in to around 8:49 for the pertinent part):