Durbin Delivers Floor Speech Calling On His Colleagues To Protect IVF Access Ahead Of Right To IVF Act Vote

WASHINGTON – Ahead of the Right to IVF Act vote, U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, spoke on the Senate floor urging his colleagues to vote for this crucial legislation.  The legislation, which Durbin is a cosponsor of, establishes a clear and enforceable nationwide right to receive, provide, or cover in vitro fertilization (IVF) services and other assisted reproductive technologies.  It also expands insurance coverage for such care. 

During his speech, Durbin praised Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) for their efforts on this legislation.  He also highlighted Senator Duckworth’s journey with IVF.

“What's at stake here is privacy and freedom as to whether we, as Americans, are going to respect one another in making these fundamental human decisions.  There are politicians in this chamber, as well as legislatures across the country, who want to make that decision for your family.  Don't let them take that away from you.  That's why this vote is so important.  What we're guaranteeing is the privacy and freedom of families who want to choose IVF,” Durbin continued.  “Vote yes on this proposal.”

One in seven women in the United States, age 15-49, have trouble getting pregnant or sustaining a pregnancy.  In 2022, 91,771 infants born (or 2.5 percent of all infants born in the U.S.) were conceived through the use of assisted reproductive technologies (ART).  According to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, as of 2022, there were 4,902 babies in Illinois born from IVF.

Following the Alabama Supreme Court’s ruling that frozen embryos are “children” under state law, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a full hearing to examine the disturbing trend of attacking women’s reproductive rights.  That hearing came after two previous hearings the Committee has held on reproductive freedoms since Roe was overruled—one in July 2022 and one in April 2023.  Since Dobbs, the reproductive health care landscape in America has become more unsettled, resulting in women across the country—whether or not they live in states where abortion is restricted or banned—facing negative and sometimes life-threatening outcomes. 

Video of Durbin’s floor speech is available here.

Audio of Durbin’s floor speech is available here.

Footage of Durbin’s floor speech is available here for TV Stations.