Confirmation Hearing Shows Gorsuch is an ‘Ideologue Who Will be Hostile to Women’s Health and Rights,’ Ness Says

Statement of Debra L. Ness, President, National Partnership for Women & Families

“It’s clear from Judge Gorsuch’s responses to questions on women’s health and rights during his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing that President Trump fulfilled his promise to appoint a justice who is fundamentally hostile to reproductive rights.

In response to questions by Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Judge Gorsuch admitted that he was the previously unknown judge who took extra and unusual steps in a Utah case to side with extremist politicians who used misinformation and lies to deny women basic health care at Planned Parenthood health centers. Judge Gorsuch’s admission of going out of his way to side with anti-abortion politicians in the case demonstrated why he is the wrong choice for such an important lifetime appointment. In response to a series of questions from a number of senators, Judge Gorsuch also doubled down on the position he took in the Hobby Lobby case – that for-profit corporations are ‘people’ that can use religion to deny women birth control coverage.

Following allegations that, while teaching at the University of Colorado, he made comments in a Legal Ethics and Professionalism class that women manipulate employers by not disclosing their plans to become pregnant, Judge Gorsuch also refused to answer basic questions from Sen. Durbin (D-Ill.) about sex discrimination in the workplace. That is unacceptable. Women in all industries, across race and ethnicity, and in every state, continue to experience pregnancy discrimination in the workplace. The consequences – for women, families and the country – are serious.

Taken in context with his alarming record on issues of fairness and equality, his responses – or lack thereof – to questions on women’s health and sex discrimination in the workplace further show that Judge Gorsuch is an ideologue who will be hostile to women’s health and rights. He is the wrong choice for a lifetime appointment on our nation’s highest court and we strongly urge the Senate to refuse to confirm Neil Gorsuch.”

About the National Partnership

The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, reproductive health and rights, access to quality, affordable health care and policies that help women and men meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at NationalPartnership.org.

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