Today I spent hours and hours watching or listening to the Wisconsin Assembly floor session. They are working on the ‘budget’. Yet the entire day was made up of abortion legislation; bills mandating ultrasounds (and yes, transvaginal ones) for any woman opting for an abortion. I have never been so anxious watching Wiseye. Never. However, as upsetting as this circus has been, there has also been something wonderful to witness.
On February 21, 2011, I was sitting in Senator Wirch’s office as everyone began to wonder where the Democratic Senators were. They were not in session and therefore quorum was not met as the infamous anti-labor bill was about to be passed. When I finally heard that they “left”, my heart swelled with pride. That was the first time I ever really felt a sense of pride for a group of politicians.
Today, I felt that pride once again and even to a heightened degree. Our Wisconsin Assembly Democrats have represented the citizens of Wisconsin in thee most eloquent, insightful, compassionate way I have ever witnessed.
Representatives shared extremely personal stories and exhumed painful memories for the sake of their constituents. They told stories of miscarriages, rape and pregnancy complications. With tears in their eyes and a fight in their soul, they fought a losing battle in the best possible way.
The courage of Representative Mandy Wright left anyone who was watching breathless with her traumatic recount of rape. She spoke so strongly through such emotion. Quite inspiring.
Representative Sondy Pope described the choice that was made when her husband began hospice and a DNR was chosen. Life is filled with difficult decisions most of us never consider or plan.
“Women don’t want to grow up and have abortions,” she stated firmly.
Representative Hesselbein. Just wow. She explained what it is like to lose a child and how an ultrasound during that time would have been even more devastating. Just heartbreaking and so meaningful.
“Children don’t stop being children when they’re born. Children don’t stop being children when they’re poor,” a statement made by Representative Johnson really stuck with me.
And Representative Shankland said it too well, “Instead of having women at the table, you have us on the menu!”
I wish I could give a shout out to each and every Rep. who spoke today. Taylor, Danou, Mason, Barca, Hintz…each and every one of them presented brilliantly and thoughtfully. They all fought for what they know to be right. And they do this…they expend this energy and emotion all the while knowing that breaking today’s party lines is nothing short of impossible.
I said earlier that this was a losing battle. And yea, right now, it is. But 2014 will be here before I will get a chance to paint my bathroom. Okay, bad example because I am lazy. But it will be here before we know it and we need to build our arsenals now because while were losing battles, we will win the war. And it ain’t gonna be pretty.
Thank you, Assembly Democrats – you gave a glimpse of hope on a pretty jacked up day.