Home U.S. House passes two bills protecting abortion rights in wake of Dobbs ruling

U.S. House passes two bills protecting abortion rights in wake of Dobbs ruling

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The U.S. House voted Friday, largely along party lines, to pass two bills defending abortion rights.

The House passed the Women’s Health Protection Act, which would restore the right to an abortion nationwide, by a 219-210 vote, with Texas Democrat Henry Cuellar joining the entirety of the House Repulican Caucus voting no.

The vote to pass the Ensuring Women’s Right to Reproductive Freedom Act was 223-205.

Both bills now head to the Senate, where they are doomed to not only die, but likely won’t even get an up-or-down vote.

“I voted with my colleagues today to protect Americans’ freedoms and their access to essential health care,” said Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA-08). “In the weeks since the Supreme Court’s right wing majority overturned Roe v. Wade, Republicans rapidly began inflicting a cruel, extreme agenda across the nation as they seek to criminalize basic health decisions. The legislation we passed today would end these attacks on Americans’ rights and enshrine Roe’s protections in federal law.”

The Women’s Health Protection Act would uphold the right of women to make their own health care decisions as well as providers’ freedom to provide abortion care. It would also supersede state legislation – voiding all state-level abortion bans throughout the country.

The Ensuring Women’s Right to Reproductive Freedom Act would prohibit states from criminalizing, fining, or suing women who exercise their right to travel across state lines for reproductive health care.

“Today’s women now have less freedoms than previous generations after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade,” Rep. Elaine Luria (D-VA-02) said. “As I have said, the right to choose should be made between a woman, her health care provider, and her faith—the government should have no place in this deeply personal decision. I once again voted today to codify the right to choose into law and defend reproductive rights across the country, and I urge my colleagues in the Senate to advance these protections to the President for his signature.”

“Fundamentally, this legislation aims to protect the right of Americans to interstate travel,” Rep. Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) said. “Just as we have seen states significantly restrict or ban access to abortion in the wake of the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, state lawmakers are actively working to restrict their residents from traveling to seek lawful reproductive care — an absolute overstep of a state’s jurisdiction over the laws that apply within its own borders. Congress has both the written power and responsibility to protect the right to interstate travel, and I am proud we took this step today to protect the right of American women to travel freely from one state to another without facing criminal penalties.”

“Last fall, I signed onto an amicus brief for Dobbs, urging the Supreme Court to uphold the precent in Roe v. Wade and protect a woman’s right to choose,” said Rep. Donald McEachin (D-VA-04). “Despite our efforts to protect safe and legal abortion access, the conservative Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, achieving the GOPs’ long-time and extreme goal of ripping away a woman’s right to make her own decisions. This ruling reversed nearly 50 years of judicial precedent, leading to immediate abortion bans in at least nine states and more bans expected soon. This decision will have dangerous impacts and threatens the lives of women across the country.”



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