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Wed Nov 21, 2012, 02:06 PM

sen deb fisher: breaking barriers, but not in feminism

Senator Deb Fischer: Breaking Barriers, But Not in Feminism

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In the Midwest, even Nebraska experienced a groundbreaking moment of its own. For the
first time, a woman won the Senate race. Deb Fischer (R) defeated former Senator Bob Kerrey (D) in a surprising landslide. A conservative from Valentine, Fischer ran on a platform of lowering federal spending without raising taxes. She won 58 percent to 42 percent.

But let’s hold the applause, shall we? This is a significant victory, but not for feminists.
Though the election of Fischer is a step for women’s representation in Nebraska, it was more a step for Republicans, as the election of a conservative senator gridlocks the state into full Republican control. The GOP now have control of all five of the state’s federal seats. That may not be good news for Nebraska women’s health care.

For sure, Fischer’s victory is an empty one for pro-choice residents in Nebraska. Fischer ran with endorsements from a number of anti-abortion groups, including Nebraska Right to Life, Americans United for Life and the Susan B. Anthony List. Her views on abortion have consistently shifted to toe the Republican line, and she is now opposed to abortion in any case except with regards to the life of the mother. Senator Bob Kerrey, among others, noted this viewpoint as “extreme.”
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In April of 2012, she voted against LB 599, a bill to provide prenatal care for undocumented immigrants and their children. In that same month, Fischer voted in favor of two bills that would limit access to abortion: LB 1103, which prohibits abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, and LB 594, an a bill that requires an ultrasound before abortions. During the September 2012 Nebraska Senate debates, Fischer stood fast on her (current) abortion views, as well as supported the repeal of Obamacare.

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