Old arguments are wearing thin, too. Gone are the days when conservatives could marginalize abortion access as a social issue and claim elections hinge on economic matters, especially with women driving the margin of victory in so many elections. Women in this country know that our economic security depends on our ability to decide when and with whom we have families. More and more middle-class families dependent on two incomes viscerally understand the inextricable connection between access to family planning and their economic outlook. This is no secret: Global data prove that in countries where women have access to family planning, all other socioeconomic indicators outperform countries where women do not.
And yet, elected officials who vote for abortion restrictions disproportionately also vote against contraception access, comprehensive sex education and the kinds of measures that support women who do have families, including paid sick days, maternal leave and funding for day care and early education. Officials who vote this way are not anti-abortion; they are doggedly committed to legislating morality about how women behave in society. This worldview doesn’t match most people’s experience and is antithetical to the freedom and equality prized by most Americans.