legislation introduced to protect roe v wade and contraception access
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Bipartisan legislation introduced to protect Roe v. Wade and contraception access

roe v. wade abortion rights
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The Reproductive Freedom For All Act would codify women’s rights to abortion and protect contraception access.

Introduced in the U.S. Senate Monday by Sens. Tim Kaine of Virginia, Lisa Murkowski of Arkansas, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Susan Collins of Maine introduced the legislation to enact federal law the essential holdings of Roe v. Wade and related cases, protecting abortion rights and contraception access. According to the press release, the bill would undo the damage of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, and would enshrine in federal law the fundamental right to reproductive freedom.

“After the Supreme Court gutted a woman’s right to make personal health care decisions, Congress must restore that right,” Kaine said in the press release. “That’s why I’ve worked with my colleagues to find common ground on this bipartisan compromise that would do just that. The Reproductive Freedom For All Act would restore the right to abortion and protect access to contraception by enshrining those freedoms into federal legislation.”

The legislation would prohibit state regulations that impose an undue burden on a woman’s access to pre-viability abortions, while allowing states to enact reasonable restrictions on post-viability abortions – provided that states cannot ban abortions that are necessary to protect the life or health of the mother; protect access to contraceptives; and preserve conscience protections.

“Every American should have autonomy over their own health care decisions, and the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs has made it imperative for Congress to restore women’s reproductive rights,” Murkowski said. “For five decades, reproductive health care decisions were centered with the individual — we cannot go back in time in limiting personal freedoms for women.”

Sinema said that women’s health care decisions should be them, their families and their doctors.

“Our bipartisan, commonsense legislation protects the health and wellbeing of women in Arizona and across the country by ensuring all women — no matter where they live — can access the health care they need and have the ability to make their own decisions about their futures.”

“The Supreme Court’s recent abandonment of longstanding precedent erodes the reproductive rights on which women have relied for half a century,” Collins said. “These basic rights need to be the same for American women regardless of the state in which they reside. Our bill would restore the right to obtain an abortion by enacting in federal law Roe v. Wade and other seminal Supreme Court decisions pertaining to reproductive freedom. In addition, our bill would protect access to contraception. By reinstating — neither expanding nor restricting — the longstanding legal framework for reproductive rights in this country, our bill would preserve abortion access along with basic conscience protections that are relied upon by health care providers who have religious objections.”

The press release stated that a recent Pew Research Center poll determined more than 60 percent of Americans believe abortion should be legal in all or most cases.

 

 

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca J. Barnabi is the national editor of Augusta Free Press. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, she began her journalism career at The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star. In 2013, she was awarded first place for feature writing in the Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Awards Program, and was honored by the Virginia School Boards Association’s 2019 Media Honor Roll Program for her coverage of Waynesboro Schools. Her background in newspapers includes writing about features, local government, education and the arts.