Statement to the Media
September 10, 2009

Obama's healthcare speech sacrifices women and immigrants

"I am mad as hell at how President Obama is scapegoating women and immigrants in order to buy favor with rightwingers. He's trying to appease forces who will only sabotage healthcare reform no matter what," says Radical Women National Organizer Anne Slater. Slater objects to Obama's specific mention in his September 9 address that the plan he proposes will neither extend federal money to cover abortion nor insure undocumented workers.

Slater, a feminist activist from Seattle, is in New York City in the midst of a national speaking tour calling for "No More Singing Capitalism's Blues—Sisters, It's Time to Fight!"

"As I've traveled from state to state, the strong support for single-payer health coverage for all U.S. residents has become dramatically clear. There's an all-out war going on in the Midwest over Dr. Leroy Carhart's determination to keep providing abortions despite the murder of his colleague George Tiller. Immigrants, with papers and without, are being harassed and killed by white 'patriots.' President Obama's statement is a cynical accommodation to lies that abortion is somehow immoral and that immigrants are depleting social services," says Slater. "His words will fan the acts of vigilantes and bigots. Within an hour of Obama's address, National Radical Women received an anonymous email message saying, 'Die, rotten c—nts.' I don't think this is just a coincidence."

"Obama received 59% of women's votes, yet he is undermining the crucial issue of women's control over our own bodies. He should overturn the exclusion of federal funds for abortion, rather than defending this unjust ban. Actions like these are why Radical Women calls for women, immigrants and working people to stop relying on Democrats and to turn toward independent socialist alternatives. Why should we support a two-party system that keeps kicking us to the curb?"