HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – Many state leaders at the Capitol said it is a dark day after the Supreme Court Roe v. Wade draft leak.
While nothing will change in Connecticut, and women are protected and additional measures are being put in place inside the state Capitol.
“We are ready, and we will fight against any attack on fundamental freedoms in our state,” said Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz.
A promise was made to safeguard the rights of women as the country prepares for a Supreme Court decision that could overturn the nation’s landmark Roe v. Wade ruling.
“We will defend you. I will defend you. Any time, any place,” said Attorney General William Tong.
“We are stripping away the opportunity to decide whether or not they have the capacity to take care of another human, and that’s why abortion care is healthcare,” said Claudine Constant, ACLU of Connecticut.
Lawmakers have worked quickly, finding bipartisan support, to strengthen laws here in Connecticut by passing the Reproductive Freedom Defense Act. Governor Ned Lamont has said he intends to sign it.
“Not only does this expand access to abortion care here in the State of Connecticut by allowing advanced practitioners for whom it falls within their scope of practice to provide abortion care, but it also ensures protections for individuals seeking abortion care in our state and providers providing abortion care,” said Rep. Jillian Gilchrest.
There has been opposition to this bill with some pointing out how communities of color have been deeply impacted by this issue.
“When I went into the Black schools, girls were taught very young [that] abortion was a birth control. They were told at 12, 13, and 14 without their parents knowing. On the other side, a lot of students in the white suburb communities have resources, access to resources, socio-economic things,” said Rep. Trenee McGee.
That’s why there’s a push for greater resources and a conversation about access to be had.
“I’m grateful to be a part of that conversation that I think can aid Black and brown women in this discussion, who wholistically come together and do what’s best for the women in our communities,” McGee said.
The governor is expected to sign the bill in a few weeks.
“I am very appreciative to the majority of lawmakers in Connecticut who had the foresight to draft this legislation at a time when the right to a safe and legal abortion in America is in jeopardy,” Lamont said. “I am proud to stand up for access to reproductive healthcare and reproductive freedom. As long as I am the governor of this great state, we’ll never waiver on the right to choose, and the belief that medical decisions should be made between a patient and their doctor. As soon as this bill is transmitted to my office, I will sign it into law.”
The video below is from News 8 at 5 on May 3, 2022.
Several other lawmakers have released statements:
If the Supreme Court of the United States moves forward with this draft as written, it will be devastating for our country. It would mean women will be subjugated by the Court to relinquish any control they rightly have over their own bodies. While we are mindful this leaked opinion is not final, it shines a spotlight on the Congressional action that must be taken. I am proud the House has already voted for the Women’s Health Protection Act that codifies Roe v. Wade. The Senate can no longer hide behind the cloture vote. There is a new urgency for them to act now. The American public needs to know where Congress and the United States Senate stands. It’s time for the Senate to do what they’re elected to do: vote! We have seen state legislatures across the country pass devastating limits on access to abortion and reproductive care. I commend the Connecticut State legislature for the action they have taken on reproductive rights. We will continue to stand for reproductive rights in Connecticut and across the country.Rep. John Larson
“If this draft reflects the true opinion of the Court’s majority, it will be a devastating, unprecedented attack on reproductive freedom for millions of Americans, especially for those living in states with ‘trigger laws’ designed to ban abortion as soon as Roe is overturned. This opinion robs women of the right to make decisions about their own bodies and instead empowers extreme politicians to make some of the most personal and consequential decisions for them,” said Murphy. “Let’s be clear: it was never hyperbole when Democrats started raising the alarm about the Court’s politicization. When Republicans said they would nominate Supreme Court justices to overturn Roe v. Wade, they weren’t lying – and they won’t stop there. Their ultimate goal is a nationwide ban that will block abortion access everywhere. But the fight is not over. It’s time to build upon the movement to elect pro-choice candidates up and down the ballot to ensure reproductive rights are protected at the local, state, and federal levels. We won’t give up.”Senator Chris Murphy