Democratic-Led States Taking Action Against Abortion Bans

( – The US Supreme Court overturned federal abortion protections in 2022 with the Dobbs v. Jackson decision. Republicans quickly moved to restrict the procedure in as many states as possible. Democrats are now trying to protect the procedure in the states they control.

Approximately one in five patients traveled out of their states to receive abortion care in the first half of 2023. That’s compared to one in 10 patients in 2020. Fourteen states now have almost total bans on abortion. Nearly the entire Southeastern US is off-limits to women who want to terminate their pregnancies.

Democrats are responding by passing laws to maintain access to the medical procedure. In 2023, Governor J.B. Pritzker (D) signed a bill that shields women by regulating license plate readers to ensure nobody is tracking out-of-state abortion patients. Illinois saw the largest increase in patients coming from other states, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

In California, Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill that would allow Arizona abortion doctors to provide care in his state temporarily. The bill was passed after the neighboring state’s Supreme Court ruled the state’s 1864 abortion ban could be enforced.

Newsom said that California refuses to “stand by and acquiesce to [the GOP’s] oppressive and dangerous attacks on women.”

In May 2022, before the Dobbs decision was released, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont (D) signed legislation to shield abortion providers and patients who go to the state to receive the procedure. Other states have passed similar measures, including Maryland.

At the federal level, Democrats targeted the Comstock Act, which many on the Left believe former President Donald Trump will use to outlaw the mailing of the abortion pill if he wins reelection in November. The 151-year-old law prohibits the shipment of “every article or thing designed, adapted or intended for producing abortion.”

Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee President Heather Williams told CBS News that for every restriction passed against abortions, the Left has “enacted protections” to allow patients in red states to receive care elsewhere.

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