Hillary Clinton delivers empassioned response to questions on family planning, reproductive health, women’s rights, abortion

Here are the questions asked by Rep. Christopher Smith (R-New Jersey) during this Congressional hearing from April 22, 2009:

Q1. “Is the Obama administration seeking, in any way, to weaken or overturn pro-life laws and policies in African and Latin American countries?”

Q2. “Does the United States’ definition of the term ‘reproductive health’, or ‘reproductive services’, or ‘reproductive rights’ include abortion?”


Here are some of then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s best responses:

1. “Congressman, I deeply respect your passionate concern and views, which you have championed and advocated for over the course of your public career. We obviously have a profound disagreement.”

2. “It is my strongly held view that you are entitled to advocate–and everyone who agrees with you should be free to do so anywhere in the world–and so are we.”

3. “We happen to think that family planning is an important part of women’s health, and reproductive health includes access to abortion, that I believe should be safe, legal, and rare.”

4. “It has been my experience that good family planning, and good medical care, brings down the rate of abortion. Keeping women and men in ignorance, and denied the access to services, actually increases the rate of abortion.”

5. “During my time as First Lady, I helped to create the Campaign Against Teenage Pregnancy. And while we were working to provide good information, access to contraception, and deiscion-making that would enable young women to protect themselves and say no, the rate of teen pregnancy went down. I’m sad to report, that after an administration of eight years that undid so much of the good work, the rate of teenage pregnancy is going up.”

6. “We are now an administration that will protect the rights of women, including their rights to reproductive healthcare.”



What do you think after watching the video? What were your favorite moments from Clinton’s defense of family planning and reproductive health?