Mayor Bill de Blasio has one word for the U.S. Senate's vote on Thursday to roll back protections on federal funds meant for reproductive health: "Shameful."
The mayor followed that up with a lengthy statement, released shortly after the Senate vote, in which he said it was clear that Republicans have an "anti-woman agenda" and that Vice President Mike Pence, who cast the deciding vote in repealing a funding rule, has "crowned himself its leader."
"Fresh off of [Wednesday's] meeting on women’s issues, Vice President Pence cast a tie-breaking vote to allow the Senate to gut funding for women’s healthcare and Planned Parenthood," de Blasio said in the statement.
The rule, which the Senate voted 51-50 in favor of killing, was intended to keep federal grants flowing to clinics that provide contraception and other services in states that want to block the funding. In recent years states such as Texas have kept some health care providers from receiving the grants, as part of the country's long-standing fight over abortion.
Promising that New York City stands with women, de Blasio said the city would "safeguard" the birth control, family planning, cancer screenings, breast exams and other services that New Yorkers need.
The city's first lady, Chirlane McCray, also had sharp words for the Senate and Pence.
"The Senate, led by Vice President Pence, just voted to drag us women back into the dark ages," McCray said in a statement. "Families need reproductive health care. Women need Planned Parenthood. America doesn’t need a bunch of men practicing the politics of misogyny.
"I hope Vice President Pence can look the women in his life in the eye and explain why their health is worth less than a man’s," she added.