Republican Rob McKenna Won't Stand Up for a Woman's Right to Choose

Highlighting Republican Rob McKenna's silence on efforts to ensure women in Washington State maintain their right to choose, the Washington State Democrats released "Silence" today. The video details both the McKenna campaign's claims that he should be commenting on issues in Olympia, and his noticeable silence on the Reproductive Parity Act.

By contrast, Jay Inslee immediately supported the Reproductive Parity Act, legislation necessary to maintain the access to abortion coverage Washington women have now. As we implement the Affordable Care Act some women, who as a result of voter approved Initiative 120 currently have access to abortion coverage, are at risk of losing that access without this bill. The Reproductive Parity Act will safeguard that access regardless of what other choices we make as we implement the health care exchange.

"Women should not be forced to make health care decisions based on what is covered by their insurance plan," said Valerie Brady Rongey, vice chair of the Washington State Democrats. "Women in Washington State have been guaranteed their right to choose for more than 40 years, with that commitment reaffirmed in 1991. The Reproductive Parity Act will preserve and strengthen that basic commitment, making Rob McKenna's silence on the issue that much more stunning."

While McKenna initially said he would not comment on the recent budget debate in Olympia, he then flipped his stance and interfered in the process, something both Governor Gregoire and legislative leaders called unhelpful and destructive. Now, despite his campaigns claims that gubernatorial candidates should comment on issues facing the legislature, McKenna has been completely silent on the Reproductive Parity Act.


March 6, 2012: McKenna Still Has Not Commented On Reproductive Parity Act. Nicole Broder in the Seattle Times reported that McKenna still had not taken a position on Reproductive Parity Act. Broder wrote, “But McKenna has not commented. I tried to reach him, but he's in Washington, D.C., for the National Association of Attorneys General meeting and wasn't available for comment.” [Nicole Broder, Seattle Times, 3/6/12]

January 30, 2012: McKenna Still Had Not Taken Position. According to the Stranger, as of January 30, 2012, McKenna still had not taken a position on the Reproductive Parity Act. [The Stranger, 1/30/12]

January 13, 2012: McKenna Avoided Taking A Stance On The Issue. According to the Huffington Post, “Abortion is already becoming a wedge issue in Washington's highly competitive gubernatorial race. Rep. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), who is running for governor and has a strong pro-choice record in Congress, immediately pledged his support for the bill. Republican candidate Rob McKenna, who currently serves as the state's Attorney General, has avoided taking a stance on the issue…McKenna's dodge could help him win over anti-abortion advocates in the state, who strongly oppose the proposed mandate.” [Huffington Post, 1/13/12]

On Facebook, McKenna Posted On His Wall That He Looked Forward To Reading The Bill When It Becomes Available. During a Facebook Wall Chat with McKenna, he posted, “Regarding the proposed parity act, I look forward to reading the bill when it becomes available. I believe providing access to reproductive health services is critical, and fortunately private insurers currently are doing so. I also want to read the bill so that, as Attorney General, I can understand how my clients such as DOH would be affected.” [McKenna, Facebook Wall Chat, 1/10/12]

  • The Stranger Noted That Cody’s Reproductive Parity Act Had Already Been Posted When McKenna Made This Facebook Comment. According to the Stranger, Rep. Cody’s Reproductive Parity Act had already been posted. They hyperlinked to the bill. [The Stranger, 1/11/12]