PoliticsThursday 06.13.24

48-47: The Senate fails to pass a bill to establish a federal right to IVF access.

The United States Senate on Thursday failed to pass a bill to establish a federal right to in vitro fertilization access, as all but two Republicans blocked the bill.

The bill, the Right to IVF Act, failed 48-47. Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska were the only Republicans who joined Democrats to approve the bill. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York changed his vote to “no” in a procedural move to preserve the option to bring up the bill again later.

The legislation — a response to the Alabama Supreme Court earlier this year ruling that frozen embryos are people, briefly endangering IVF access in the state — would have also enshrined doctors’ right to provide IVF treatment, mandate coverage for fertility treatments under employer-sponsored insurance and certain public insurance plans, and expand coverage of fertility treatments for service members and veterans.

But the bill was never expected to get the 60 votes necessary to break the filibuster and pass; Republicans have argued the legislation is not necessary and was just political messaging from Democrats. All 49 GOP senators before the vote signed a letter that stated they support IVF and accused Democrats of “false fearmongering.”

Recount Wire