July 9, 2018

The International Women’s Health Coalition (IWHC) urges the United States Senate to reject the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to serve as associate justice of the Supreme Court. Kavanaugh has an extensive history of opposing abortion rights and women’s access to reproductive health services, including in his rulings from the bench. His lack of respect for the legal precedent surrounding reproductive rights and access to health care should disqualify him for serving on the US’ highest court.

“It’s been over three decades since Roe v. Wade firmly established a constitutional right to abortion, yet President Trump has chosen to elevate a jurist willing to undermine this legal precedent and push the country further down a retrograde path contrary to the global trend of liberalizing abortion laws,” said Shannon Kowalski, director of advocacy and policy at IWHC. “If confirmed, Kavanaugh would pose a grave threat to sexual and reproductive health and rights, both in the United States and around the world.”

Throughout his career, Kavanaugh has proven a foe of women’s health and rights, and has specifically worked to limit access to abortion services. Active in the conservative, anti-choice Federalist Society, Kavanaugh served in a number of roles in the George W. Bush White House. Appointed to the bench in 2003, and confirmed in 2006, Kavanaugh has repeatedly argued against a woman’s right to contraception and abortion. In 2017, he sought to block the undocumented 17-year-old woman known as Jane Doe from receiving necessary abortion services. He has also sought to roll back the Affordable Care Act’s provisions that ensure women access to no-copay contraceptive coverage—using the guise of religious freedom—seeking to grant more employers the option to deny women access to contraceptive coverage.

A Supreme Court nominee should unequivocally support upholding and advancing legal precedent on reproductive rights, LGBTQ rights, and human rights in the US and abroad. Kavanaugh’s background and judicial record indicate that he will not uphold these principles and instead will actively seek to undermine access to critical health care services. IWHC strongly opposes the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh and urges the Senate to reject his appointment.

Contact: Liza Kane-Hartnett; (+1) 212-801-1260

Photo: Phil Roeder