18 States To Introduce Bills to Protect Reproductive Rights

“We’ve been working for awhile on this — these things don’t happen overnight.”

By Eric Shorey

IT HAS NOT EVEN BEEN A FULL WEEK into Donald Trump's administration and those even remotely left of center are already working to defend the rights of LGBTQ people, immigrants, racial minorities, and (of course) women. Now, pro-choice politicians in 18 states are working together to put forward new bills that defend reproductive rights, right on the tails of Trump's attempts to restrict access to abortions around the world.

According to Teen Vogue (thank whatever gods you pray to for Teen Vogue, by the way): Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin have created a list of proposed measures that are hoping to counter the right-wing's latest attacks on reproductive health. The proposals include: cracking down on fake abortion centers by forcing them to identify themselves as non-medically licensed facilities, increasing emergency contraception access for survivors of sexual assault, recognizing abortion as healthcare, and preventing discrimination against those who have received abortions (or have made other "controversial" healthcare decisions).

It is not clear how many (if any) of these bills will pass, but many are likely thinking of this as a symbolic show of resistance, particularly in red states where restrictions on women's health are most likely to succeed.

“We’ve been working for awhile on this — these things don’t happen overnight,” said Gloria Totten, founder and president of PLI who worked with politicians to put together these bills, said to Teen Vogue. “Today presents a major strategy by the reproductive rights movement — many, many state advocacy organizations and many, many pro-choice politicians who are saying, We’re not going to stay on the defense and we’re not going to let the federal government drive abortion strategy in our state and we’re going to get in front of it by putting forward policies that are proactive and expand access to care in this downright dangerous administration.”

TV also notes that recent Pew polls show that the majority of Americans — 57 percent, in fact —believe that abortion should be legal in most or all cases. Additionally, Gallup poll show that 79 percent of Americans believe abortion should be legal under all or certain circumstances; only 19 percent of respondents indicated that the procedure should always be illegal.

Republicans continually attempting to curtail rights that most Americans support? No wonder Trump is so unpopular.

[Photo: Getty Images]

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