Most U.S. Senate Democrats signed a letter to President Joe Biden urging him to “take immediate action” to protect abortion rights, following Friday’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturning Roe v. Wade.
The one page letterled by Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Chair Patty Murray of Washington and signed by 37 other Democrats, called the decision “an unprecedented assault on women” and pushed Biden ” to use the full force of the federal government to protect access to abortion in the United States.”
“Now is the time for bold action to protect the right to abortion,” the senators wrote. “You have the power to fight back and lead a national response to this devastating decision, so we ask that you take every action available to your administration, across all federal agencies, to help women access abortions. and other reproductive health care, and to protect those who will face the greatest burdens from this devastating and extreme decision.
The senators who signed the letter are Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley from Oregon, Jackie Rosen and Catherine Cortez Masto from Nevada, Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper from Colorado, Sherrod Brown from Ohio, Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith from Minnesota, Chris Van Hollen from Maryland, Maggie Hassan and Jeanne Shaheen from New Hampshire, Tim Kaine from Virginia, Debbie Stabenow from Michigan, Mark Kelly from Arizona, Cory Booker and Robert Menendez from New Jersey, Raphael Warnock from Georgia, Ben Ray Luján and Martin Heinich from New Mexico, Mark Warner from Virginia and Tammy Baldwin from Wisconsin.
The letter is dated Saturday, a day after Biden said he would do everything in his power to protect abortion access – but that his power as CEO was limited and it was up to Congress to codify the protections that had existed for 49 years under of the Roe v. Supreme Court Wade.
The current Congress, in which Democrats have a narrow majority in the House and the Senate is split 50-50, has appeared unwilling to pass federal legislation to protect abortion rights, Biden said, adding that the voters should elect congressional candidates who support abortion rights.
The court’s decision will allow each state to set its own abortion laws, resulting in a patchwork of access across the country. The result is expected to be an increase in the number of women traveling out of state for abortions, as well as unsafe abortions in states where the medical procedure will now be banned or heavily restricted. All over the United States, the reaction was quick.
Biden, who was Monday at The G7 summit in Schloss Elmau, Germany is set to return to the United States later this week, following a NATO summit in Madrid, Spain.
In a sign of how Democrats plan to highlight the issue in the midterm elections in the fall, the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee, the campaign arm of the caucus, revealed a new website Monday. It is dedicated to highlighting the abortion records of Republican candidates.
The group produced a video showing a dozen Republican candidates for U.S. Senate seats saying they oppose Roe, and in some cases adamantly, abortion rights.
It is not a question of whether a woman should be forced to bring a child to term. It’s about whether a child should be allowed to live, even if the circumstances of its birth are somehow inconvenient.
– JD Vance, Republican candidate for the United States Senate in Ohio, on pregnancy following incest or rape
Herschel Walker in Georgia, for example, has indicated that he supports a total ban on abortion with no exceptions. JD Vance in Ohio told an interviewer that he opposed abortion in cases of rape or incest.
The video included audio of Vance being asked if a woman should be forced to bear a child resulting from rape or incest.
“It’s not about whether a woman should be forced to bring a child to term,” Vance told the interviewer. “It’s about whether a child should be allowed to live, even if the circumstances of that child’s birth are somehow awkward.”
His campaign website describes him as “100% pro-life” and calls for the “elimination of abortion”. Vance supports an exception if the pregnant person’s life is in danger, The New York Times reported in May.
The DSCC also released a fact sheet citing Senate candidates opposed to abortion rights in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.