Ms. WOOLSEY. Mr. Speaker, there are few things more universal to the health and lives of women than birth control. It is basic health care. It's essential to women's economic independence and professional fulfillment. In fact, with the swearing-in of our new colleague from Oregon, we now have 94 women in Congress. My guess is there would be about half that number without the benefit of contraceptives. That all began 40 or 50 years ago.
So, when the Speaker said this morning that Congress must overturn the President's policy ``acting on behalf of the American people,'' I'm not really sure what he's talking about because the President's decision is on the right side of common sense, sound science, and public opinion. It enjoys support from a majority of Americans and a majority of Catholics.
Let me add that many of my House colleagues who want to deny access to contraception are the same ones who want to cut programs that help women and families facing unwanted pregnancies.
I applaud the President for standing up to reactionary forces and standing up for women's health care and women's freedom.