Photo from MisionesOnline.

Esteban Bullrich, ex-Minister of Education and current senatorial candidate from Cambiemos, repudiated abortion yesterday in a polemic against the anti-femicide group Ni Una Menos.

“Not one woman less also holds for when there is a baby inside,” said Bullrich in an interview on the radio program Ahora es Cuando. “Not one [baby] less. Because when there’s a baby girl inside, she’s also being killed” he continued, suggesting a contradiction in the group’s platform, which condemns violence against women but supports legal and secure access to abortion. The same day, Bullrich gave an emotional interview on the television show Debo Decir, in which he thanked God for the life of his daughter, who survived liver cancer several years ago.

With respect to his comments on abortion, people are firing back via social media. Some responses are ironic, suggesting that Bullrich’s polemic about the abortion of “baby girls” means that he prefers the abortion of baby boys. But other Twitter users have reminded Bullrich that during his tenure as Minister of Education, he defunded sex education programs and favored implementing religious curricula in public schools.

Critics argue that anti-abortion policies will not stop procedures from happening. According to Human Rights Watch, an estimated half a million illegal abortions are performed every year in Argentina. The number of women that die as a result is “very high,” according to Human Rights Secretary Claudio Avruj, though the government does not track these statistics.

“This is a message for Esteban Bullrich, who is mixing up all the concepts,” comedian Malena Pichot said in a video uploaded on Twitter. “Ni Una Menos is a movement created to fight against femicides, which are crimes that happen because a man believes that a woman is his property,” she explained. “That is a femicide, Esteban. It’s very easy to understand if you think about it for one second. When a woman seeks abortion services, she doesn’t think ‘Oh, it’s a baby girl, she’s a fucking bitch, I’m going to kill her.’ She does so because it’s an embryo, and she has control over her body and life.”