Biden Signs Executive Order Protecting Access to Reproductive Health Care Services
WASHINGTON — On Friday, President Joe Biden signed an executive order aimed to protect access to reproductive health care services. Following the signing, the White House laid out four main points the Biden administration hopes to accomplish with the new order in place.
Biden’s executive order aims to safeguard access to reproductive health care services, including abortion and contraception; protect the privacy of patients and their access to accurate information; promote the safety of patients, providers and clinics; and coordinate the implementation of federal efforts to protect reproductive rights and access to health care.
Speaking of the Supreme Court justices who voted in favor of overturning Roe, Biden said, “The majority rattles off laws from the 19th century to support the idea that Roe was a historic anomaly because states outlawed abortion in the 1880s toward the end. But that’s just wrong. The truth is, today’s Supreme Court majority is playing fast and loose with the facts.”
“The practice of medicine should not be frozen in the 19th century,” he later said.
Biden urged Americans to vote in the coming elections in November.
“The only way to fulfill and restore … [the right to abortion] for women is by voting. … We need two additional pro-choice senators and a pro-choice House to codify Roe as a federal law. Your vote can make that a reality,” Biden said.
In the event the national law to codify Roe is passed, Biden promised to sign it “immediately upon its passage at my desk.”
During his speech, the president cited the example of the 10-year-old rape victim who recently had to travel out of her home state of Ohio to Indiana in order to receive an abortion. He questioned who would ever think this was acceptable, that a 10-year-old could not receive the proper care for a pregnancy that was potentially life threatening to her, because of the recent overturning of Roe.
“If you want to change the circumstances for women, and even little girls in this country, please go out and vote,” Biden said.
“When tens of millions of women go out and vote this year, they won’t be alone. Millions and millions of men will be taking up the right alongside them to restore their right to choose and the broader right to privacy in this nation,” he continued.
Biden called on the justice department to protect women seeking to invoke their rights, to protect clinics that are still open, and to protect women traveling from trigger-law states to non–trigger-law states in order to receive safe and legal abortions.
Before signing the executive order, Biden reminded his listeners that the overturning of Roe affects everyone.
“The court and its allies are committed to moving America backwards with fewer rights, less autonomy, and politicians invading the most personal decisions. Remember the reason for the decision has an impact much beyond Roe, and the right to privacy generally. Marriage equality, contraception and so much more [are] at risk,” Biden said.
“This is a choice, this is a moment — the moment — to restore the rights that have been taken away from us, and the moment to protect our nation from an extremist agenda that is antithetical to everything we believe as Americans,” he added.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., applauded Biden for signing the order and discussed what the House will do next in order to protect the right to choose.
“Next week, we will again pass the Women’s Health Protection Act: landmark legislation enshrining the protections of Roe v. Wade into federal law,” Pelosi wrote in a statement on the executive order.
“We have a sacred, fundamental duty to expand freedom in America, not to roll back fundamental rights. … House Democrats will never relent in our fight to defend freedom for women and for every American,” she stated.
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