WASHINGTON, D.C. -- A recent Alabama Supreme Court decision declared embryos created through IVF as "children," and that disposing of unused embryos could be categorized as “wrongful death.”  

The ruling ignited nationwide backlash and raised concerns about the future of in vitro fertilization. 

“This ruling is an outrage,” said Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D- NY). “The Alabama Supreme Court opens a huge potential for legal liability for IVF clinics and practitioners.” 

Sen. Gillibrand said the ruling prompted nearly half of IVF providers in Alabama to pause their services. 

The ruling also prompted Democratic senators, including Gillibrand, to quickly sign on to a bill that enshrines protections for IVF and for the doctors who perform the procedure. 

“For many prospective parents, IVF is a last-ditch effort to have a family, and preventing them from accessing the treatments they need is not only cruel, but it's absurd. We need to pass the Access to Family Building Act as soon as possible,” said Gillibrand. 

Democrats requested to pass the bill last week by unanimous consent, meaning any one senator could block it from advancing. Quick passage of the bill was blocked by Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R- MS). However, many Republicans have come out in support of IVF since the Alabama ruling. 

“Kelly and I have many close friends who have had trouble with fertility issues and they have beautiful families as a result of IVF,” said House Speaker Mike Johnson (R- LA). “It needs to be readily available. It needs to be something that every American supports,” said Speaker Johnson. 

However, Democrats are not mincing their words to Republicans about the role they say Republicans have played in getting to this point. 

“Even though they back all these other movements, including repealing Roe, they’re now desperately backpedaling over the last few days because they see what they have done. These Republicans are like the arsonist who set a house on fire and then said, why is it burning,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D- NY). 

According to the CDC, between one and two percent of annual U.S. childbirths are via IVF.