Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) criticized the Democrats’ symbolic bill to guarantee abortion access nationwide.

Manchin’s opposition means the bill’s vote would not go evenly split down party lines.

Democrats hoped to use the bill to force Republicans on the record on abortion, but Manchin said the bill was still too broad even as it was pared down from a version earlier this year.


“We’re going to be voting for a piece of legislation that I will not be voting for today,” Manchin told reporters. “But I would vote for a Roe v. Wade codification if it was today. I was hopeful for that, but I found out yesterday in caucus that that wasn’t going to be.”

Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), who was a holdout on the previous bill, announced earlier this week that he supported the revised version.

Democrats removed a nonbinding findings section that declared restrictions on abortions to perpetuate “white supremacy” and labeled them “a tool of gender oppression” in an attempt to make the language more palatable for holdouts.

The revised bill would prevent governments from requiring “medically unnecessary in-person visits” before abortions and prevent the government from requiring patients to disclose the reason for their abortion.

At issue for Manchin, it would also broadly prevent governments from enacting laws that “single out the provision of abortion services, health care providers who provide abortion services, or facilities in which abortion services are provided”.

The bill needs 60 votes to pass but with all Republicans and Manchin opposing, it will not receive even the 50 votes that could have passed it were the filibuster not in place.

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