Washington – President Joe Biden signed an executive order today Friday to protect access to abortion, while facing mounting pressure from his fellow Democrats to be more forceful on the issue after the United States Supreme Court ended the constitutional right to abortion two weeks ago with the repeal of Roe v. Wade.
The measures he outlined are intended to mitigate some of the potential penalties that women seeking abortions could face after the ruling, but their ability to safeguard abortion access across the country is limited.
Biden acknowledged the constraints his office faces, saying it would take an act of Congress to restore access to abortion in the more than a dozen states where strict limits or outright bans have gone into effect in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. judgment of the Supreme Court. About a dozen more states are preparing to impose additional restrictions in the coming weeks and months.RELATED
Join me as I make an announcement on protecting access to reproductive health care services. https://t.co/WtFjnVLdx9
— President Biden (@POTUS) July 8, 2022
“The fastest way to restore Roe is to pass national law,” Biden said. “The challenge is to go out and vote. For God’s sake, there are elections in November. Vote. Vote. Vote. Vote.”
Biden formalized instructions to the Departments of Justice and Health and Human Services to address efforts to limit women’s ability to access federally approved abortion medications or to travel across state lines to access to clinical abortion services.
Vice President Kamala Harris, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra and Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco joined him in the Roosevelt Room as he signed the order.
Today I signed an Executive Order to protect the reproductive rights of women in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s extreme decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
It formalizes the actions I announced right after the decision and will add new measures to protect women’s health. pic.twitter.com/cujWTnxKvw
— President Biden (@POTUS) July 8, 2022
His executive order also directs agencies to work to educate medical providers and insurers about how and when they are required to share privileged patient information with authorities, in an effort to protect women who seek or use health care services. abortion. It also calls on the Federal Trade Commission to take steps to protect the privacy of those seeking reproductive care information online and to establish an interagency task force to coordinate federal efforts to safeguard access to abortion.
Biden has also directed his staff to call on volunteer attorneys to provide women and providers with free legal assistance to help them navigate new state restrictions following the Supreme Court’s overturn.
The order, following the high court’s June 24 ruling that ended abortion rights nationwide and left it up to states to decide whether or not to allow the procedure, comes as Biden has faced criticism. from some members of her own party for not acting more urgently to protect women’s access to abortion. The decision in the case known as Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization overturned the landmark Roe v. Wades from 1973.
Since the decision, Biden has stressed that his ability to protect abortion rights through executive action is limited without action by Congress, noting that Democrats do not have the votes in the current Congress to do so.
“We need two additional pro-choice senators and one pro-choice house to codify Roe,” he said. “Your vote can make that a reality.”
He predicted that women will go to the polls in “record numbers” in frustration at the court’s decision, and said he hoped “millions and millions of men will take up the fight alongside them.”
Defenders of women’s right to abortion demonstrate in front of the United States Supreme Court after revoking the constitutional right. (The Associated Press)
Thousands of people came to the court grounds to demonstrate against the determination of the majority of conservative judges. (Jacquelyn Martin)
Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez came to the demonstration to show herself against the illegalization of abortion. (Jacquelyn Martin)
The decision of the Supreme Court of the United States was already expected after a draft opinion was leaked that suggested the revocation of Roe vs. Wade. (Gemunu Amarasinghe)
The decision impacts the entire nation and makes abortion illegal immediately in those states that had already promoted legislation in that direction. (Jacquelyn Martin)
Ocasio Cortez during his speech at the demonstration in favor of abortion. (Jacquelyn Martin)
The right was guaranteed in the United States after the Roe vs. Wade that occurred in 1973. (Gemunu Amarasinghe)
President Joe Biden called the decision a “cruel” act that puts the health and lives of women at risk. (Gemunu Amarasinghe)
Members of the United States House of Representatives walk to the Supreme Court to demonstrate against the repeal of the right to abortion. (Steve Helberg)
On Friday, he reiterated his criticism of the Supreme Court’s reasoning in striking down what had been a constitutional right to abortion for half a century.
“Let’s be clear on one thing up front, this was not a decision driven by the Constitution,” Biden said, accusing the court’s conservative majority of “playing fast with the facts.”
“Ultimately, Congress is going to have to act to codify Roe into federal law,” Biden said last week during a virtual meeting with Democratic governors.