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GOP’s IVF Dilemma: Treading Carefully After Alabama’s Frozen Embryo Ruling

Buckle up because we’re diving into a story that’s as twisty as a pretzel and twice as salty. It all started in Alabama, where the Supreme Court dropped a bombshell ruling: frozen embryos are kiddos, legally speaking. This decision sent shockwaves far and wide, especially among the GOP crowd, who suddenly found themselves in a pickle thicker than grandma’s stew.

Picture this: Three Alabama fertility clinics, including the heavyweight champion of health systems, hit the pause button on in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments faster than you can say “baby freeze.” Why? Because this ruling threw a giant wrench into the works, that’s why.

Now, imagine being a Republican who’s all about pro-life but also giving a thumbs-up to IVF. Talk about being stuck between a rock and a hard place! These folks are now doing the political equivalent of a dance-off, trying to explain their stance without tripping over their own feet. And all of this is happening while the GOP has been playing defense ever since the Supreme Court decided to give Roe v. Wade the old heave-ho.

Enter Nikki Haley, GOP presidential hopeful, who waded into the fray with an “embryos are babies” comment that had her backpedaling faster than a cyclist in reverse. A few hours later, she’s on CNN, doing the hokey-pokey about whether she agreed with the ruling but still standing by her baby talk.

Not to be outdone, Sen. Tim Scott dodged the embryo question like it was a dodgeball aimed at his head, leaving the door open for a little ribbing at Haley’s expense. Meanwhile, Sen. Tommy Tuberville is over here scratching his head, trying to figure out what the fuss is about but agreeing we need more kiddos anyway.

The plot thickens when the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) jumps in, advising GOP candidates to sing the praises of IVF, oppose any nay-saying about it, and push for more access. It’s like they’re trying to steer the Titanic away from the iceberg with a paddle.

Following the NRSC’s cue, a parade of GOP candidates and congresspeople started voicing their love for IVF louder than a karaoke singer belting out “I Will Always Love You.” From Kari Lake’s opposition to restrictions to Dave McCormick’s celebration of IVF as a “ray of hope,” the message was clear: IVF is a good thing.

Even Bernie Moreno, who’s as pro-life as they come, joined the choir, singing the virtues of IVF for families struggling with infertility. And then there’s Rep. David Schweikert, who, despite his past support for a “fetal personhood” bill, is now all about that IVF life.

But wait, there’s more! Former President Trump, ever the showman, declared his undying support for IVF treatments, painting himself as the patron saint of strong, healthy American families. He even gave the Alabama Legislature a nudge to sort this mess out, pronto.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the aisle, Democrats like Sens. Tammy Duckworth and Patty Murray, and Rep. Susan Wild are pushing for legislation to protect IVF on a federal level. Yet, the GOP support for this move is as sparse as hen’s teeth, with only Rep. Anna Paulina Luna showing some love.

And just when you thought it couldn’t get any more popcorn-worthy, Eric Johnston, president of the Alabama Pro-Life Coalition, piped up about the need for more IVF regulation. Because, according to him, IVF has its place, helping couples who couldn’t otherwise have children.

So, there you have it, a tale of political gymnastics, unexpected allies, and a whole lot of baby talk. As the GOP navigates these choppy waters, one thing’s for sure: this embryo saga is more gripping than your favorite soap opera, and we’re all tuned in to see what happens next.