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Laura Bassett
Laura Bassett is a political reporter at The Huffington Post focusing on women's issues. She has a Master's degree in English Literature and gender studies from Georgetown University and has previously worked for U.S. Congress, Island Press and the Washington Post. She can be reached at or on Twitter @lebassett.

Entries by Laura Bassett

Texas Abortion Clinics Receive Last-Minute Reprieve

(785) Comments | Posted August 29, 2014 | 11:40 AM

In May of 2013, Texas had 41 licensed abortion clinics to serve its more than 5 million women of reproductive age. On Monday, if a major provision of a new anti-abortion law went into effect, the state would have been left with only seven clinics -- all concentrated...

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Gillibrand: Congressmen Called Me 'Fat' After Baby

(88) Comments | Posted August 27, 2014 | 3:08 PM

If there was any question as to whether sexual harassment exists among members of Congress, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) confirmed the answer in a new interview with People magazine.

According to excerpts from the interview obtained in advance by the New York Post, the congresswoman recalled multiple male...

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Greg Abbott's Sexual Assault Compensation Claim Called Into Question

(22) Comments | Posted August 26, 2014 | 5:10 PM

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott's (R) gubernatorial campaign claimed last week that the candidate "awarded over $1 billion to victims of crimes like sexual assault and domestic violence" -- but a closer look at the numbers reveals the campaign has exaggerated that total.

Abbott's campaign made the claim in...

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Moms Push Back Against 'Sexist' NRA Attack

(813) Comments | Posted August 25, 2014 | 5:46 PM

The National Rifle Association has made a concerted effort over the past several years to expand its appeal to women. But in a move that has drawn criticism from many women, the NRA's official magazine has attacked the founder of a grassroots network of mothers against gun violence...

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Republicans Attack Mary Landrieu For Something Her GOP Opponent Did Too

(21) Comments | Posted August 25, 2014 | 3:49 PM

The National Republican Senatorial Committee went after Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) last year for being late to pay taxes on her home in Washington, D.C. But Landrieu's NRSC-backed Senate opponent, Rep. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), made the same mistake this year.

According to public documents from the District...

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White House Rolls Out New Birth Control Accommodation For Nonprofits

(1881) Comments | Posted August 22, 2014 | 11:21 AM

The Obama administration announced on Friday a new accommodation for religious nonprofits that object to covering the full range of contraceptives in their employee health care plans.

The new accommodation will allow religious nonprofits, such as Catholic schools and hospitals, to opt out of covering birth...

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North Carolina Senate Race Deeply Divides Men And Women

(211) Comments | Posted August 21, 2014 | 11:53 AM

A tight race for one of North Carolina's Senate seats is turning into a veritable battle of the sexes, with a huge and growing gulf between male and female voters.

A new Suffolk University/USA Today poll shows that Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.) is leading her challenger, State House...

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Cincinnati Abortion Clinic Closes, Leaving Access 'Severely Endangered' In Region

(13) Comments | Posted August 20, 2014 | 3:12 PM

While Texas lawmakers are passing sweeping laws that shut down multiple abortion providers at a time, Ohio is taking a quieter but potentially more effective approach to cutting off access to safe and legal abortion.

Women's Med, one of two abortion providers in Cincinnati, announced on Wednesday...

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A Few Bold Members Of Congress Join Fight Against Long-Standing Anti-Abortion Policy

(601) Comments | Posted August 8, 2014 | 11:43 AM

Lawmakers who support abortion rights have long fought against policies that restrict women's access to the procedure, such as gestational limits, mandatory waiting periods and physical building requirements on clinics. But one federal anti-abortion policy has remained virtually untouchable for nearly four decades: the Hyde amendment.

The amendment, which...

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Judge Who Let Ray Rice Off For Domestic Abuse Pushes Prosecution Of Philly Single Mom

(271) Comments | Posted August 7, 2014 | 3:36 PM

The same judge and prosecutor who let professional football star Ray Rice avoid a trial after beating his wife unconscious are pushing forward with the prosecution of Shaneen Allen, a single mother who carried a gun into New Jersey without realizing her Pennsylvania permit didn't apply there.

Allen, a mother...

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Bold Airport Campaign Exposes States' Treatment Of Women

(61) Comments | Posted August 4, 2014 | 3:07 PM

When tourists fly into New Orleans this week, they will be welcomed by a large sign at the airport exposing the condition of women in the state.

"Louisiana women are paid $.67 to every man's dollar," the sign reads. "More than 22% of women live in poverty. Louisiana doesn't...

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Alabama Abortion Clinic Law Ruled Unconstitutional

(506) Comments | Posted August 4, 2014 | 11:10 AM

A federal judge ruled on Monday that an Alabama law requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges at local hospitals is unconstitutional.

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson said the new law, which evidence shows would have closed three out of Alabama's five abortion clinics, imposes an "undue burden"...

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Pelosi Hesitates To Criticize CIA: 'They Really Come After You'

(20) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 3:34 PM

WASHINGTON -- House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is being a bit more careful these days in her criticism of the Central Intelligence Agency, claiming the group has "come after" her over comments in the past.

After CIA Director John Brennan apologized to members of the Senate...

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Ruth Bader Ginsburg: 5 Male Justices Have A 'Blind Spot' On Women's Issues

(215) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 8:00 AM

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said Thursday in an interview on Yahoo News that five men on the court have a "blind spot" when it comes to discrimination against women.

The five conservative justices last month ruled in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores Inc. that...

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House Republicans Declare 'War For Women'

(160) Comments | Posted July 30, 2014 | 3:45 PM

WASHINGTON -- A group of GOP Congress members led by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) on Wednesday unveiled a package of bills aimed at improving women's economic situations and attracting women voters.

The proposals include tax credits for childcare, a bill that prevents retaliation against employees who ask about...

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NRA Member Who Lost Sister To Gun Violence Tearfully Asks Senate To Protect Women

(1017) Comments | Posted July 30, 2014 | 12:28 PM

WASHINGTON -- Elvin Daniel, 56, is a card-carrying member of the National Rifle Association, an avid hunter and a self-described "constitutional conservative" from a small town in Illinois. He became an unlikely witness for the Democrats on Wednesday at the first-ever Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on gun violence against women....

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Court Ruling Keeps Mississippi's Only Abortion Clinic Open

(177) Comments | Posted July 29, 2014 | 3:02 PM

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday ruled in favor of Mississippi's last standing abortion clinic, ruling that politicians cannot pass abortion restrictions that would shut the clinic down.

The ruling strikes down a state law passed in 2012 that would have required all abortion providers to have...

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Gun Safety Group Pressures Key GOP Senators In Dramatic TV Ad

(1069) Comments | Posted July 28, 2014 | 9:00 PM

The gun safety group funded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg will air a dramatic television ad in three key states and Washington, D.C., on Tuesday to pressure key Republican senators to support new gun restrictions for domestic abusers.

The 30-second ad by Everytown for...

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Republican Voters Break With NRA On Gun Ban For Stalkers

(369) Comments | Posted July 28, 2014 | 3:03 PM

While Republican voters tend to align with the National Rifle Association in opposing new gun restrictions, they are sharply at odds with the nation's largest gun lobby when it comes to restrictions based on domestic violence.

More than two-thirds of GOP voters (68 percent) said they would support...

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Texas Abortion Rate Drops Dramatically As New Restrictions Take Effect

(1006) Comments | Posted July 23, 2014 | 12:00 PM

Since Texas' sweeping new anti-abortion law went into effect last November, the number of legal abortions performed in the state has dropped 13 percent, according to a new study released Wednesday by the The Texas Policy Evaluation Project.

The report finds that the number of reproductive-age women...

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