US House Republicans seek to fine Citigroup over abortion feud | national politics

WASHINGTON – Dozens of Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday demanded that the chamber drop Citigroup Inc. as its provider of credit cards to lawmakers after the financial institution offered to cover travel expenses for employees who want an abortion.

The credit cards, issued to all 435 House members, are used to pay for flights, office supplies and other goods.

Texas and several other states have enacted new abortion restrictions, and the US Supreme Court has upheld a challenge to the landmark Roe v. Wade to protect access to abortion nationwide. Citigroup was the first major US bank to commit to paying workers’ abortion costs.

Abortion is a deeply divisive issue in the United States and a focus for both parties ahead of the Nov. 8 midterm elections that will determine control of Congress for 2023 and 2024.

“By deciding to provide abortion travel for its employees, Citi has firmly affirmed its position to advance the liberal agenda of on-demand abortion and has not considered whether a particular state’s laws are in place to protect the safety of a woman Protecting a woman and her child,” Rep. Mike Johnson and 44 Republican colleagues wrote in a letter to the House Chief Administrative Officer, who oversees logistics matters like credit cards.

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There are 209 Republicans in the 435-seat House of Representatives, which is narrowly controlled by Democrats. Most Democrats in Congress support abortion rights.

The Republican demand was the latest sign that the political party, which for decades had been closely associated with American corporations, had fallen out with big business over disagreements on social issues.

A spokeswoman for Catherine Szpindor, chief administrative officer of the House of Representatives, was not immediately available for comment.

A Citigroup spokesman declined to comment.

Another hot topic that has divided Republican officials and companies is LGBTQ issues.

In Florida, Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis has entered into a feud with Walt Disney Co., whose Disney World complex is one of the state’s most important economic engines. The company is seeking to repeal a law signed by DeSantis that restricts discussion of LGBTQ issues in schools.

“Disney has alienated a lot of people now,” he said at a news conference last week, threatening to lift regulatory conditions that allow it to police its Orlando complex with little government intervention.

Citigroup covers abortion travel expenses as US states restrict access

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