Monday, March 4

Congress stands against the right-wing attempt to stop the reform that extends the right to abortion

The reform that extends the right to abortion has passed its first examination in Congress. The plenary session has stood up against the attempts to stop it by PP and Vox and the efforts of Ciudadanos to regulate surrogacy. They were the three formations that have defended amendments to the entirety of one of the star projects of the Ministry of Equality, which have been rejected by the majority of the chamber. This has also happened with the Trans Law on the same morning, which the right-wingers have also tried to overthrow before the support of the rest of the chamber.

This is how the abortion reform remains: the keys to the law beyond casualties due to painful rules

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The debate has been used by Vox to display its anti-abortion arguments and once again stir up the accusation of “apology for pedophilia” against Irene Montero for her words on sex education. Deputy Lourdes Méndez has come to ensure that the rule “will educate children in the promotion of abortion and contraception, legitimizing sexual debauchery and even pedophilia, according to the minister’s statements.” She and she has continued: “Abortion is the exaltation of the sexual revolution in its most devastating extremes, pedophilia as well.”

There are several parliamentarians from other formations, including Pilar Valluguera, from ERC, Bel Pozueta, from EH Bildu, or Rosa Méndez, from PSOE, who have responded to the words of the Vox representative and who have shown solidarity with the head of Equality. “It does not matter if it is legislated or not, women abort the same, they have been doing it all their lives. The only thing the law does is that it be done with guarantees”, defended the Republican deputy. “Sex education is something very serious and hoaxes should not be allowed in this chamber and the presidency should not act”, added the deputy of United We Can, Sofía Castañón.

From Bildu, Pozueta has warned the right that “they have lost the battle” because “women are owners of our bodies and it is a social conquest that has no turning back. You are the past and we are the present and the future”. For her part, the socialist Méndez has denounced that the backward proposals “want to return us to that black and white Spain in which women were protected” and has lamented “having to claim the obvious, that motherhood is an option and not an obligation”.

The norm includes a battery of measures, among them, it regulates conscientious objection and reinforces the right to abortion in public health. It also reverses the reform that the PP undertook in 2015 to restrict the right of 16 and 17-year-old girls to have abortions without parental consent and contemplates menstrual health for the first time in legislation.

The PP, without going to the bottom

Irene Montero, present in the chamber, has defended the initiative and has accused the PP and Vox of “disparaging sexual freedom” and trying to “prohibit or hinder the right to abortion”, something that, on the other hand, “does not make disappear, it only puts the lives at risk” of women. The minister has also stopped on the subject of sex education: “Sex education occurs throughout life, whether we like it or not. The question is whether we want the bases to be violent pornography and for them to seek life or with adequate educational support (…) The absence of sexual education in schools only benefits the aggressors”, she has stated.

The PP, for its part, has hidden behind the urgent procedure demanded by the Government and accepted by Congress to charge against the norm. “The aim is to steal debate and parliamentary work,” said deputy Marta González, who has barely gotten to the bottom of the matter. The parliamentarian has described the reform as “unnecessary and inopportune”, has accused the Ministry of Equality of “inventing a problem” and of “being reckless” for “not waiting for the Constitutional Court to resolve the appeal” that its own formation presented against the 2010 abortion law.

Like the return amendments of PP and Vox, the alternative text amendment of Ciudadanos, with which it proposed a regulation of surrogacy, has also been rejected by the chamber. The deputy Sara Giménez has blamed “the conservatives” who “do not want to discuss expanding women’s rights” and at the same time the PSOE and United We Can for “criminalizing families by surrogacy” and has emerged as “the only party” that “says yes to the expansion of freedoms”.

No formation has accepted the proposal of the orange formation. “Women’s bodies are much more than mere reproductive machines, they are neither bought nor sold to give birth”, responded the socialist Méndez. For his part, Joseba Agirretxea, from the PNV, has put on the table that the Ciudadanos initiative “is about a bill” different from that of abortion, while before the Government he has recognized that there are things that he does not like about the reform considering that “there are many things that we believe should not have been touched” of the standard approved 12 years ago by Zapatero.