I was so happy to converse with someone so informed even though we didn't share the same political views. I think we both left the meeting having learned something new and, I dare say, both changed our views on infertility legislation. That was really the point of it all- Republicans and Democrats talking through issues associated with infertility and figuring out what role the government should play in fixing them.
So I called her... She explained that in light of the bill being pulled, she wanted me to know what the Tillis camp had done and what they were currently thinking.
PEOPLE! CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS? This is your government in action. What are the issues you care about? Send letters to your representatives and get down to DC to talk to them!
Anyway- her big points were these (I'm paraphrasing so don't quote me):
· Tillis wants veterans to properly receive benefits that they already have before they support adding more benefits, like IVF for injured veterans. His amendments would assure their priorities for improving the VA were met first.
<<How do I feel about this personally? In a world with 7 billion people- there are a ton of issues that range from super important to extremely important and uber important…. We shouldn't have to stop working on some issues just because there are other issues that need solutions. My hope is that we could make progress on many fronts if everyone would pitch in and help move solutions forward on fronts where they are useful. But- that being said- there is wisdom in not doing too many things at once in the event that no one thing would ever get done well. So my point is that it takes all kinds of ways of thinking and ideas in government and I would love to continue the discussion with the Tillis group! >>
· His amendments included a budget offset for the additional benefit of IVF for veterans.
· They addressed specific bioethical concerns (no gender selection or genetic testing for diseases, and no funding to clinics harvesting fetal tissue, cells, or organs).
· Added a mandate for clinic reporting of IVF results (how many embryos made, transferred, stored).
These were the critical things needed in the bill for Tillis and presumably other Republicans to support it.
<< I don’t endorse the amendments the Tillis office added to The Women Veterans and Families Health Services Act. I am, however, grateful that our representative considered the issue that was brought to him by his constituents and he attempted to support the bill taking into account his beliefs and the people that he represents.
Read here for the Washington Post’s take on it and why RESOLVE supports Senator Murray’s decision to pull the bill.