Elissa Slotkin: Not even birth control access will be safe if Trump wins in 2024

Elissa Slotkin

Photo by Nathan Howard/Getty Images

By Bonnie Fuller

April 29, 2024

Michiganders may think their reproductive rights are safe, but Trump and Republicans are already plotting their next steps to take away access in every state, Slotkin warns.

Rep. Elissa Slotkin has a warning for Michiganders. The guarantee for abortion and other reproductive freedom that they enshrined in the state constitution won’t protect them from a Trump presidency that aims to end access to abortion, IVF, and even birth control nationally.

“What people don’t understand is that overturning Roe v. Wade was the 50-year goal of the Republican side, but that’s what they were doing through the front door. There’s a ton of things going on through the back door as well,” she explained in an exclusive interview with The ‘Gander.

Slotkin, who is running to replace retiring Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow, ticked off the back door actions:

  • “They’re trying to limit access to medication abortion.”
  • “They’re trying to define ‘personhood’ as beginning once an egg is fertilized (so you can’t do IVF in case any unused embryos are destroyed).”
  • “They’re trying to limit travel of a woman from a state that’s banning abortion to a state that allows abortion, including military women, who are on these military bases without a choice.”

Michiganders may have come out in droves to vote to protect reproductive freedom in the state in the 2022 election after the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, but Slotkin noted that as a member of Congress, she has been an eyewitness to Republican members voting “15 times this year on some kind of bill that would cut women’s access to abortion.”

In fact, 125 Republican House members—including Speaker Mike Johnson—have sponsored the Life At Conception Act, which defines human life as starting from “the moment of fertilization,” with no exception for IVF.

RELATED: A second Trump term could lead to abortion and IVF bans

Donald Trump meanwhile has bragged continuously that he “killed” Roe v. Wade by appointing three right-wing judges to the Supreme Court.

“For 54 years, they were trying to get Roe v. Wade terminated, and I did it. I’m proud to have done it,” he told an audience at a Fox News Town Hall in January.

He at one point also floated a 15 week nationwide abortion ban as a possible position if he is elected president in November.

Slotkin, who has represented Michigan’s 7th Congressional District since 2019, believes that some Michiganders think they are “good” in terms of protecting reproductive freedom, but under a Trump presidency with a Republican-led Congress that recognizes “fetal personhood,” Michigan and every other state could quickly discover that IVF has become illegal just like it nearly did in Alabama.

“Most Americans know someone who’s either gone through IVF or is currently going through it. One out of eight couples in the United States has problems with fertility,” she pointed out to The ‘Gander.

After the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that IVF providers could face criminal liability for destroying embryos—even inadvertently—Slotkin said her office was besieged by calls from constituents.

“People were calling and saying, ‘I’m in the middle of IVF, I’ve spent my entire life savings so that my husband and I can have a child. Please tell me that this isn’t coming to a theater near us,’” she recounted.

But Republicans’ impacts may not stop there as parts of their party take increasingly hard lines on even access to simple birth control.

“What does this mean for contraception? IUDs? The birth control pill?” Slotkin questioned. “If you believe a fertilized egg is a person, then there’s a lot of things medically that can be connected to that.”

The reality for Michiganders is that anti-abortion groups have already been laying the “back door”—as Slotkin describes it—groundwork to ban at least some forms of contraception like IUDs, the morning after pill, and the birth control pill, which they claim prevent fertilized eggs from implanting in the uterus and are therefore “abortifacients” or agents that induce abortion.

That’s why, she believes, it’s essential for Michiganders who want to protect all forms of their reproductive freedom to get out and vote for candidates that support those rights in November.

Slotkin said its imperative that she win Stabenow’s seat, so the party can at least keep a 50/50 balance with Republicans.

“If we lose the seat in Michigan and it becomes a Republican seat, then it is no longer a bulwark against a Trump presidency or against all the crazy things happening in the Supreme Court,” Slotkin said.

Slotkin will likely face off against Trump-endorsed former Congressman Mike Rogers.

Rogers, who calls himself “pro-life,” has a long history in Congress of voting against abortion access.

If Slotkin is elected to Stabenow’s seat and the Democrats maintain a majority in the Senate and get a majority back in the House, under a re-elected Joe Biden, she wants them to “stop playing so much damn defense and play some offense on protecting our right to choose.”

“I’m interested in being part of that offensive strategy on protecting our rights and our democracy,” Slotkin, a former CIA analyst who served three tours in Iraq, said. “Coming from a national security background, that’s what we do for a living in the Pentagon.”


  • Bonnie Fuller

    Bonnie Fuller is the former CEO & Editor-in-Chief of HollywoodLife.com, and the former Editor-in-Chief of Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, USWeekly and YM. She now writes about politics and reproductive rights. She can be followed on her Substack at: BonnieFuller1.


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