May 24, 2019/Press

In a New Low, “GOP Is Exploiting Lawmaker’s Breast Cancer To Push Anti-Abortion Bill”

In Case You Missed It…Yesterday, media reports from HuffPost and Talking Points Memo brought much-needed attention to GOP efforts to ram through anti-abortion legislation on Monday night, when Representative Sydney Batch was taking time off to recover from a procedure as she undergoes treatment for breast cancer.

Not on Batch’s watch. When she heard Republicans were plotting to hold the vote to override Governor Cooper’s veto of anti-choice legislation, she cut down her week off to a matter of hours. In an interview with Talking Points Memo, Batch said: “When I realized that Monday, [Republicans were] planning to hold the vote it was worth physical sacrifice and pain to come in to vote. It was extremely important for me to vote.”

In an interview with HuffPost, Batch added, “[Speaker] Moore is well aware of what’s happening with me and that I’m dealing with ongoing treatment.”

This is a new low for House Republicans — but Batch is not giving Republicans an inch in their relentless attempts to criminalize doctors and undermine the rights of women. According to HuffPost, “despite the pain and discomfort she’s in, Batch said she’ll continue to show up to sessions to ensure her vote is heard.”


HuffPost: “N.C. Dems Say GOP Is Exploiting Lawmaker’s Breast Cancer To Push Anti-Abortion Bill,” By Alanna Vagianos, May 23, 2019.

State House Speaker Tim Moore (R) has rescheduled the veto vote override at least 10 times since the beginning of May, according to Batch and Clemmons. They say Moore keeps pulling the vote in hopes that enough Democrats will eventually be absent so that GOP members can successfully override Cooper’s veto.


“It’s extremely frustrating to me, because I would think that there would be people who would have the decency, including Speaker Moore, to say that someone deserves to be able to recover after having a major surgery,” Batch told HuffPost.

“Moore is well aware of what’s happening with me and that I’m dealing with ongoing treatment,” she added. “I have not asked for a lot.”

Talking Points Memo: “North Carolina GOP Looks to Ram Through Anti-Abortion Law,” By Cameron Joseph, May 23, 2019.

“North Carolina state Rep. Sydney Batch (D) had planned to take off work this week as she recovered from a recent mastectomy procedure to treat her breast cancer. Instead, she spent it at the statehouse, making sure Republicans couldn’t come up with enough votes to pass new abortion-related restrictions into law.”

“If enough Democrats hadn’t shown up, they would have been able to ram through the legislation, since all their members attended session on Monday — a rarity in a chamber where members on both sides regularly miss votes.”


“Moore didn’t have a clear answer on why he wouldn’t just take the bill off the calendar for now and bring it back up when he had the votes, rather than force lawmakers on both sides to make it into the office every day of the legislative session even if they have health issues or personal emergencies.”