Biden’s Summit for Democracy Includes Push for Abortion
Wednesday, December 15, 2021

President Biden hosted the first Summit for Democracy which the White House reported brought together “leaders from government, civil society, and the private sector to set forth an affirmative agenda for democratic renewal and to tackle the greatest threats faced by democracies today through collective action.” 

Representatives from 100 select countries were invited to participate in “the defense of democracy” meeting. Selectively excluded were the pro-life countries Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras whose citizens comprise a large number of those seeking to cross the U.S. southern border for a better life in the U.S. Countries that are truly in need of assistance to strengthen and secure democracy for their citizens.

There is speculation that pro-life laws and policies were a reason why democratic pro-life Guatemala was not asked to attend the Summit, especially since President Alejandro Giammattei was already visiting Washington, D.C.  Alfonso Aguilar, president of the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles and former head of the U.S. Citizenship Office, told El American: “I have no doubt that one of the reasons Guatemala was excluded from the Summit is because of the country’s government defense of the right to life. The Biden administration is aggressively promoting abortion in the region and is upset that there are countries that oppose its agenda of cultural imperialism.”

The state department press release, “The Summit for Democracy: Advancing Gender Equity and Equality for Representative Societies”, stated that the “Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues (S/GWI) is leading the Department of State’s efforts to advance gender equity and equality, one of the goals of the Summit. The Biden National Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality  includes promoting access to abortion in the U.S. and around the world. It states that the U.S. will “defend the constitutional right to safe and legal abortion in the United States, established in Roe v. Wade, and promote access to sexual and reproductive health and rights both at home and abroad.” 

Following the Summit, USAID explained  that the U.S. will launch “a global initiative to foster the agency of women and girls” with implementation of the $33.5 million Advancing Women’s and Girls’ Civic and Political Leadership Initiative which will take “a holistic approach” and include promoting an environment for women and girls to safely exercise their rights.

NGOs were an important part of the Summit with Biden State department explaining that it “provided an opportunity to highlight the importance of partnerships—with local and national governments, legislatures, civil society, philanthropic organizations, and the private sector.”

Pro-abortion NGOs Fòs Feminista and the Global Justice Center hosted a side event, co-hosted by the Embassy of Canada to the U.S., entitled Democracy without Sexual and Reproductive Rights is An Empty Promise. The discussion was described as focusing “on the importance of reproductive rights to democracy, the relationship between authoritarianism and control of bodily autonomy, and the impact of US abortion policies that run counter to free speech and democracy globally, including policies like the Helms and Siljander amendments and the Global Gag Rule. The event will also discuss and propose ways for the United States to realize its commitment as a champion for sexual and reproductive health and rights at home and abroad.”

FOS Feminista is the new name for International Planned Parenthood Federation Western Hemisphere Region (IPPFWHR) joined by the Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE) and the International Women’s Health Coalition (IWHC) in a “new platform for international action and feminist solidarity focused on women, girls, and gender-diverse people” across the Global South.