Biden to sign abortion order under pressure from left after Roe overturn

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Biden to sign abortion order under pressure from left after Roe overturn

Two weeks after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and allowed states to decide how to regulate abortion, President Biden plan

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Two weeks after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and allowed states to decide how to regulate abortion, President Biden planned to sign an executive order Friday meant to mitigate potential penalties for women seeking the procedure — though it’s unclear how effective it will be in practice.

The White House has been criticized by liberals for not being more aggressive in response to the June 24 ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization — even though the administration has stated repeatedly that the primary responsibility for safeguarding abortion rights rests with Congress.

Friday’s order specifically asks the Department of Health and Human Services to safeguard access to medical abortions, emergency medical care, and contraception in all 50 states as well as launching outreach and public education efforts. 

Meanwhile, Biden will request Attorney General Merrick Garland convene pro bono lawyers and legal organizations to offer their services “to encourage robust legal representation of patients, providers, and third parties lawfully seeking or offering reproductive health care services throughout the country.”

US President Joe Biden
Biden has put the onus on voters dissatisfied with the ruling to elect pro-abortion Democrats to Congress in the November midterm election.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

The White House specifically noted that “[s]uch representation could include protecting the right to travel out of state” to obtain an abortion.

There are currently no known efforts by states to restrict medical abortion or access to contraception, and any state law meant to prevent women from crossing state lines to obtain an abortion would likely be struck down as unconstitutional, as Justice Brett Kavanaugh noted in his concurring opinion in Dobbs.

“[M]ay a State bar a resident of that State from traveling to another State to obtain an abortion?” wrote Kavanaugh, who endorsed overturning Roe. “In my view, the answer is no based on the constitutional right to interstate travel. May a State retroactively impose liability or punishment for an abortion that occurred before today’s decision takes effect? In my view, the answer is no based on the Due Process Clause”.

Abortion rights demonstrators hold signs and chant outside the US Supreme Court in Washington
The White House has been criticized by liberals for not being more aggressive in response to the June 24 ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization .
Valerie Plesch/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Biden’s executive order will also direct agencies to work to educate medical providers and insurers about how and when they are required to share privileged patient information with authorities — an effort to protect women who seek or utilize abortion services. He will also ask the Federal Trade Commission to take steps to protect the privacy of those seeking information about reproductive care online and establish an interagency task force to coordinate federal efforts to safeguard access to abortion.

The president was scheduled to speak on his order later Friday at the White House.

While Biden has repeatedly blasted the Dobbs decision, he has put the onus on voters dissatisfied with the ruling to elect pro-abortion Democrats to Congress in the November midterm election — stating flatly that “Roe is on the ballot.”

“This fall, we must elect more senators and representatives who will codify a woman’s right to choose into federal law once again,” Biden said immediately following the Supreme Court decision. 

“State laws banning abortion are automatically taking effect today, jeopardizing the health of millions of women, some without exceptions … so extreme that women and girls were forced to bear their rapist’s child.”

“This fall, Roe is on the ballot. Personal freedoms are on the ballot. The right to privacy, liberty and equality — they are all on the ballot,” he continued. 

With Post wires

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