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Madison Cawthorn wants to prevent federal funds being used to pay for abortion travel

Madison Cawthorn wants to prevent federal funds being used to pay for abortion travel
Cawthorn’s website calls for abortion to be banned completely

Caroline du Nord Membre du Congrès Madison Cawthorn may be in his final months in the US House, but the far-right firebrand isn’t going down quietly.

Not satisfied with the end of federally-protected abortion rights thanks to the overturning of Roe contre Wade par le Cour suprême le mois dernier, Mr Cawthorn introduced a bill last week that would prevent the federal government from using taxpayer dollars to fund travel expenses for any American seeking abortion care.

One of the most important ways we can protect the unborn is by stopping the Biden Administration’s gross abuse of power and executive overreach. This legislation showcases that Congress will respect the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe and not allow the federal government to overreach their constitutional authority,” reads a press release the congressman put out with the legislation.

The bill will never make it into law, thanks to Democratic control of the House. And it’s totally unclear what it’s seeking to address, beyond a favorite imagined grievance of the right: The federal government does not fund travel expenses for federal employees (or anyone else) seeking abortion care, which despite the Court’s ruling is still considered a medical procedure and not something a federal employee would need to disclose to the government.

Going beyond that, the federal government is already barred from using taxpayer funds to support abortion services (with the exceptions of procedures covered by health care plans for federal employees) thanks to the Hyde Amendment, a provision of the annual funding bill for the Department of Health and Human Services.

Mr Cawthorn is an absolutist on the issue of abortion, and according to his congressional website believes that “the protection of life ought to begin at conception”. That stance has been sharply criticised in recent days by experts who point to numerous instances where abortion is a necessary procedure to save the life of the pregnant individual themself, a fact that many of the GOP’s most hardline abortion restrictions passed in the wake of Roe do not account for.

The North Carolina congressman is experiencing the life of a lame-duck congressman on the outs with his own party’s leadership as he finishes up his first and apparently only term in Congress; the 26-year-old Cawthorn lost a close primary battle to Chuck Edwards in May. His term will end in January, meaning the youngest member of the House will leave the building without ever seeing his party take the majority.

Mr Cawthorn’s campaign for reelection came to a crushing end after an explosive controversy erupted in the wake of an interview he gave with a right-wing podcaster. Dans cet entretien, he accused unnamed colleagues in the House of inviting him to orgies.