After a historic day, abortion is legal, safe and free in Argentina. Unlike the treatment that the project of voluntary interruption of pregnancy had in 2018, where it was rejected with 38 votes against and 31 in favor, this year the acclaimed victory was obtained. For this to happen, the change of authorities after the 2019 elections was key, but also the changes of positions of some of the legislators.
Until yesterday, there were seven senators for whom there was still no information on how they were going to vote: Edgardo Kueider, Stella Maris Olalla, Oscar Castillo, Lucila Crexell, Silvina García Larraburu and Sergio “Oso” Leavy. All of them voted in favor and the final result showed 38 affirmative votes, 29 negative and one abstention.
Among the legislators who supported the project and who changed their position with respect to the one they held two years ago are Lucila Crexell, Silvina García Larraburu, Sergio “Oso” Leavy and Guillermo Snopek.
Why did they do it?
Lucila Crexell, a senator for the province of Neuquén, belonging to the Juntos por el Cambio bloc, during 2018 had abstained. This year, in a speech that lasted eleven minutes, the senator said she reached the final conclusion after “deep thought.”
“I did not change my personal beliefs, nor my way of thinking about what I believe about abortion, I changed the approach from which I understand that it should be approached,” he said.
In this sense, he said that it is a matter of public health and that “clandestine abortion is a silent cause that kills, hurts and writes very sad stories about our country.”
“No month the drama of clandestine abortion that causes deaths and criminalization of women in vulnerable situations is indifferent. Because I believe that this law does not change at all to those who oppose it, as it will be a law that they will not have to appeal to. But on the contrary, I believe that this law changes everything to those people in our society who need the State to make them visible and assist them, “was one of his conclusions.
For its part, the rionegrina Silvina Garcia Larraburu On this occasion, the Frente de Todos voted in favor, thus modifying its vote of rejection of two years ago. About her vote, the legislator spoke of deconstruction.
“It is not easy to deconstruct oneself, structures falter, what we considered firm and solid, suddenly we are facing the abyss of the new to be created,” he said and added: “I have the power to question and identify with the wishes of future generations.” .
Along these lines, he directed his criticisms in one sense: “They all judge us, all to a greater or lesser extent were victims of a system created by and for men. Now we name it: that normality is patriarchy.”
And the senator concluded: “My vote is for a free woman, it is a deconstructed vote, it is an affirmative vote.”
Like García Larraburu, Serious “Bear” Leavy, also from the Frente de Todos and representative of Salta. A few days before the vote, the senator had expressed that he was thinking about his vote and had emphasized that one thing was what he wanted and another, what it represented.
During the session, Leavy explained it in these terms: “I realized that it is not about me, it is a situation that concerns many women.” In addition, he departed from the idea “abortion yes, abortion no” and analyzed it from the legal point of view and access to health.
“If we are going to give that woman who has decided a health system or we are going to let her continue doing it in a bathroom or in situations that do not correspond. I have tried to understand women who decide to abort and in that process I have given that this law does not force abortion nor does it promote abortion, it gives it a legal and safe framework, “he said.
Meanwhile, the only abstention from the project was that of Jujuy
William Snopek, of the Justicialista Front, which in 2018 had voted against, which allowed this time the number of positions in rejection of the IVE to be lower.
Although he maintained that he maintains the belief expressed two years ago and that therefore he is “in favor of life from conception,” he also highlighted a disturbing fact: his province “has one of the highest levels of suicide due to adolescent pregnancy” .
He also criticized that there is no consistent prevention system and that during these last two years, since the bill that legalizes abortion was last discussed, as legislators they did “absolutely nothing.”