In her comments, Yellen said the 1973 ruling helped allow women to finish school and increase their earning potential, leading to higher participation in the workforce.
“Research also shows that it had a favorable impact on the well-being and earnings of children,” she said. “There are many research studies that have been done over the years looking at the economic impacts of access or lack thereof to abortion, and it makes clear that denying women access to abortion increases their odds of living in poverty or need for public assistance.”
Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) later in the hearing pressed her on her answer, arguing that framing the issue of abortion around labor force participation “feels callous to me.”
“It means that children will grow up in poverty and do worse themselves,” Yellen responded. “This is not harsh. This is the truth.”
Scott said there was plenty of room to discuss child care, financial literacy and child tax credits to improve outcomes for American kids.
“I’ll just say that as a guy raised by a Black woman in abject poverty, I am thankful to be here as a United States senator,” he said.