Rosendale amendment would strip funding for genetic testing in IVF from defense budget - TAI News
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Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-MT), at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 27, 2024. (Graeme Sloan/Sipa USA)(Sipa via AP Images)

Montana Republican U.S. Rep. Matt Rosendale is pressuring House leadership to hold a vote on his amendment to strip funding from the annual defense spending bill for genetic testing of embryos created during in vitro fertilization treatments for active-duty service members.

Rosendale filed an amendment to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2025 that would ban the Department of Defense from spending any funds on IVF treatments that genetically test embryos before they are implanted into a uterus. Genetic testing is often used in the IVF process to screen for fatal or life-limiting genetic abnormalities.

“While I feel for couples that are unable to have children, the practice of IVF is morally wrong, and I refuse to support any legislation that condones its use,” Rosendale said in a statement. “My amendment will strip funding for this practice, which is responsible for the destruction of life to the tune of hundreds of thousands of children a year. If you are opposed to abortion, you should be opposed to the practice of IVF, which destroys twice as much life as Planned Parenthood yearly.”

Rosendale also posted a video to his account on X on June 25 in which he said: “I urge my colleagues here on the Rules Committee that they should at least allow this amendment to come to the floor, and I urge my members to support me if they believe that I do, that life begins at conception, that we shouldn’t be using taxpayer dollars to support IVF.”

Rosendale offered a similar amendment earlier in June to a Veterans Affairs annual funding bill that would have removed funding for certain IVF treatments for veterans, but the Rules Committee did not allow it to come up for a vote.

As he pushes House Republicans for a vote on his anti-IVF amendment, Rosendale has also put signs in the hallway outside of his office on Capitol Hill that say, “IVF destroys more life than Planned Parenthood,” “Did You Know? Hundreds of thousands of conceived children are frozen, destroyed, or experimented upon yearly as IVF embryos,” and “If you believe life begins at conception as I do, there is no difference between an abortion and the destruction of an IVF embryo.”

Some anti-abortion activists are against IVF treatments because not all embryos created during the process are implanted into a uterus. Because they claim that embryos are people, they say that  discarding embryos for any reason is morally wrong and should be against the law.

Republicans have been on the defense over their support for IVF since February, when the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos are children and that IVF providers who discard an embryo for any reason could face criminal charges. The Alabama Legislature and Republican Gov. Kay Ivey then quickly enacted a law that provides criminal and civil immunity to IVF providers and patients.

Democrats have tried multiple times to pass legislation to protect IVF access nationwide after the Alabama ruling. However, they have been blocked by GOP lawmakers from doing so. 

Banning IVF is even more unpopular than banning abortion.

A Pew Research Center poll from April found that 70% of Americans believe IVF is a good thing. Just 8% thought IVF was a bad thing, while the remaining 22% were unsure.

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