Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blasts Republican lawmaker for straight-up denying trans people exist

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blasts Republican lawmaker for denying trans people exist

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) has blasted a Republican lawmaker who said transgender men cannot get pregnant during an abortion rights hearing.

During a congressional hearing on the state of abortion care in the US after the fall of Roe v Wade, Republican representative Andrew Clyde asked a doctor on the witness panel, Dr Bhavik Kumar, several transphobic questions.

“Are you saying that a biological female who identifies as a man and therefore becomes pregnant is, quote, ‘a man’?” Clyde reportedly asked Dr Kumar.

“Is that what you’re saying?”

Dr Kumar replied: “Somebody with a uterus may have the capability of becoming pregnant, whether they are a woman or a man.”

After repeated questioning by Clyde, Dr Kumar added: “These questions about who can become pregnant are really missing the point… I’m here to talk about what’s happening in Texas.”

Texas has now become the largest US state to ban abortions, with the Texas Tribune reporting that as of August, performing an abortion from the moment of fertilisation, unless it is to save the life of the pregnant person, is now a felony, punishable by up to life in prison and a fine of $100,000.

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez slammed Clyde after the hearing, saying his claims on trans people were not “legitimate”.

“The same folks who tell us… that [COVID-19] is just a flu, that climate change isn’t real, that January 6 was nothing but a tourist visit, are now trying to tell us that transgender people aren’t real,” she said.

“I would say that their claim is probably just as legitimate as all their others, which is to say, not very much. At all.”

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has been vocal about her support of abortion rights in the US, warning that the Supreme Court could now attack same-sex marriage after scrapping the historic Roe v Wade decision.

During an appearance on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, she called for US lawmakers to codify the rights to marriage equality, abortion, and contraception, stating the Supreme Court had “engaged in the overreaching of its authority” by denying the “human and civil” right to abortion.

She also explained that President Joe Biden should “forcefully” end the filibuster within the Senate, a rule which allows lawmakers to obstruct or slow down a piece of legislation from passing into law, which has thus far prevented the passage of the landmark Equality Act.

The landmark legislation passed through the House in February 2021 with a majority of 224 to 206 – but it has stalled for over a year in the Senate. 

“We have the possibility – when we are strengthened by the repeal of the filibuster or even the change to a talking filibuster or standing filibuster – in doing so, we can codify Roe… and all the other cases that the Supreme Court indicated that they would threaten, we can codify same-sex marriage, we can codify the right to contraception, we can codify interracial marriage,” AOC said. 

“We can do it. We can only do it if we’re not fighting with one hand tied behind our back, let alone two. 

“And so I think that right now we just need a fight. And we need to show and demonstrate to the American people that when they vote to give Democrats power, we will use it to the fullest extent possible to defend everybody’s civil, economic and human rights.”