Abortion

Oklahoma governor signs the nation's strictest abortion ban

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt has signed into law the nation’s strictest abortion ban. The ban, passed by state lawmakers last week, prohibits all abortions with few exceptions. Stitt signed the bill on Wednesday. Providers have said they will stop performing the procedure as soon as the bill is signed. The law is part of an aggressive push in Republican-led states to scale back abortion rights. The only exceptions included in the law are to save the life of a pregnant woman or if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest that has been reported to law enforcement.

Democrats ask Google to protect abortion-patient privacy

More than 40 Democratic members of Congress are asking Google to stop what they see as the unnecessary collection and retention of peoples' location data. They're concerned it could be used to identify women seeking abortions. The group of Democrats on Tuesday sent a letter to the CEO of Google's parent company saying that if abortion were to become illegal in the U.S., the cellphone location data collected and retained by the company could be used by far-right extremists looking to crack down on women seeking reproductive health care. Privacy experts fear pregnancies could be surveilled and the data shared with police or sold to vigilantes.

Mothers pass torch to daughters in abortion's forever war

Generations of women came together for a Manhattan protest against the U.S. Supreme Court’s anticipated ruling overturning Roe v. Wade. There were women who have been fighting for nearly a half century to hold on to abortion rights; there were daughters who now face the prospect of a long battle to regain those rights. The abortion war would seem to be a forever war. So mothers who joined their daughters at the May 14 protest, marching to Manhattan on the Brooklyn Bridge, were not only raging against the court and its expected decision; they were entrusting their cause to another generation.

Florida suspends abortion clinic after hospitalizations

An abortion clinic serving women from all over the U.S. South had its license suspended this weekend under an emergency order from Florida health officials after two women who had undergone procedures at the clinic were hospitalized this year. The state Agency for Health Care Administration ordered the suspension of the license for American Family Planning of Pensacola, effective starting Saturday. On its website, the clinic says it serves women from Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Georgia. In cases cited by the agency, the clinic failed to monitor the patients at all times and didn’t provide medical records when patients were transferred.

Texas race tests abortion's resonance with Democratic voters

One of the last anti-abortion Democrats in Congress is in the toughest reelection battle of his career in South Texas. Rep. Henry Cuellar is trying to win the nomination for a 10th term in a primary runoff Tuesday against challenger Jessica Cisneros. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Democratic leaders are standing by Cuellar despite his staunch anti-abortion views. Cisneros is an immigration attorney who supports abortion rights. The runoff is a test of how much abortion rights will energize voters in the midterm elections. A leaked U.S. Supreme Court draft opinion last month showed that the court may overturn abortion rights this summer.

Archbishop: Pelosi will be denied communion over abortion

The conservative Catholic archbishop of San Francisco says he will no longer allow U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to receive Communion because of her support for abortion rights. Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone said Friday in his notification to Pelosi that he sent her a letter on April 7 expressing his concerns after she vowed to codify the Supreme Court’s Row vs. Wade decision into law after Texas approved a law banning most abortions but that she never responded. Cordileone says he told Pelosi she must either repudiate her support of abortion rights or stop speaking publicly about her Catholic faith. Otherwise he says he must declare she cannot receive Communion.

Days before Oklahoma bans abortion, details still uncertain

Oklahoma is only days from enacting the toughest U.S. state ban on abortion and providers are preparing to stop terminating pregnancies. Meanwhile, questions remained Friday about how the law’s limited exceptions would be enforced. The law allows abortions to save a pregnant patient’s life “in a medical emergency” and in cases of rape, sexual assault or incest that have been reported to law enforcement. It doesn’t spell out who decides what is considered a medical emergency, and the rape and incest exception won’t help victims who don’t report the crimes. Abortion providers said they are likely to be cautious and are planning to refer some patients to states like Colorado or Kansas.

Religious backers of abortion rights say God's on their side

The loudest voices in the abortion debate are often characterized along a starkly religious divide, the faithful versus not. But the reality is much more nuanced, both at an Alabama abortion clinic and in the nation that surrounds it. The clinic’s staff of 11 — most of them Black, deeply faithful Christian women — have no trouble at all reconciling their work with their religion. And as the U.S. Supreme Court appears poised to dismantle the constitutional right to an abortion, they draw on their faith that they will somehow continue. God is on our side, they tell each other. God will keep this clinic open.

Religious backers of abortion rights say God's on their side

The loudest voices in the abortion debate are often characterized along a starkly religious divide, the faithful versus not. But the reality is much more nuanced, both at an Alabama abortion clinic and in the nation that surrounds it. The clinic’s staff of 11 — most of them Black, deeply faithful Christian women — have no trouble at all reconciling their work with their religion. And as the U.S. Supreme Court appears poised to dismantle the constitutional right to an abortion, they draw on their faith that they will somehow continue. God is on our side, they tell each other. God will keep this clinic open.

Oklahoma passes strictest abortion ban; services to stop

Abortion providers in Oklahoma say they will no longer provide the service in the state after the governor signs the latest anti-abortion measure heading to his desk. The bill passed Thursday is part of an aggressive push in Republican-led states across the country to scale back abortion rights. The bill would prohibit all abortions, except to save the life of a pregnant woman or if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest that has been reported to law enforcement. It now heads to Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt, who is expected to sign it.

Here's how abortion clinics are preparing for Roe to fall

Reproductive rights advocates are planning to open new abortion clinics or expand the capacity of existing ones in states without restrictive abortion laws. This comes as a leaked draft of a U.S. Supreme Court opinion says justices could overturn the landmark 1973 ruling that legalized abortion nationwide. Some Democratic-led states in the West and the Northeast are proposing public money for an expected influx of people traveling from other places for abortions. A clinic in Memphis, Tennessee, plans to open an abortion facility in August in the southern Illinois city of Carbondale. Illinois has easy abortion access but is surrounded by more restrictive states.

Harris to meet with abortion providers as court ruling looms

Vice President Kamala Harris will speak with abortion providers from states with some of the nation’s strictest restrictions on the procedure Thursday to thank them for their work, The White House said Harris will meet virtually meeting with medical professionals practicing in Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas, Missouri and Montana. The meeting comes weeks after the release of a draft Supreme Court opinion suggesting that justices are on the brink of overturning the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that legalized abortion nationwide. Justices are expected to issue their final ruling in the next six weeks, but those states and others are already laying the groundwork to ban abortion outright.

US warns abortion ruling could increase extremist violence

The federal government is warning law enforcement agencies around the nation of the increased potential for extremist violence after the leak of a draft Supreme Court opinion striking down the constitutional right to abortion. A memo from the Department of Homeland Security says violence could come from either side of the abortion issue or from other types of extremists seeking to exploit tensions. Separately, the Justice Department announced Wednesday that the U.S. Marshals Service has the justices of the Supreme Court under 24-hour security.

With Roe in doubt, some fear tech surveillance of pregnancy

Companies that collect data from the digital clues people leave online often know their most sensitive health information _ gleaned from web searches, health apps and location trackers. Privacy experts fear this digital trail could be used to surveil pregnancies if the U.S. Supreme Court allows abortions to be banned, as a leaked draft opinion suggests it will. Ford Foundation technology fellow Cynthia Conti-Cook says the data gives outsiders a peek into someone’s soul. It’s mostly used to target advertising, like baby products shown to pregnant women. But the data could become evidence in a criminal case, something that worries abortion supporters.

Abortion rights group files longshot Arizona initiative bid

A newly organized group of abortion rights supporters has filed an initiative that seeks to amend the Arizona Constitution to protect the right to abortion. The initiative filed Tuesday by a group called Arizonans for Reproductive Freedom is a longshot to make the ballot. The group needs to collect more than 356,000 signatures from registered voters in a little over seven weeks. Initiative proponents often aim to collect at least an extra 30% over the minimum as a buffer. The push was prompted by a leak early this month of a draft U.S. Supreme Court opinion that suggests the court is poised to strike down Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that said women have a constitutional right to get an abortion.  

Judge suspends Michigan's dormant 1931 abortion ban

A judge has suspended Michigan’s dormant ban on abortion, saying it likely violates the state constitution. The law makes it a crime to assist in an abortion. It has been on the books since 1931. But it has had no practical effect since the U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion in 1973. The Supreme Court could overturn that decision by summer, leaving abortion issues to each state. Judge Elizabeth Gleicher granted a preliminary injunction sought by Planned Parenthood of Michigan. The judge says there's “no doubt” that a right to “bodily integrity” in Michigan includes a right to end a pregnancy.

Abortion resistance braces for demands of a post-Roe future

When desperate people can’t obtain abortions near home -- when they need plane tickets, bus fare, babysitters -- they reach out to groups like the Midwest Access Coalition. The demand has become staggering.  And now, as the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to gut Roe v. Wade, it is likely to get far worse. Already, state after state has tightened restrictions, pushing pregnant people further from home, for some hundreds of miles away. Helpless to prevent the coming crisis, the goal for the resistors is to assist abortion seekers one by one, either legally by helping them travel, or illegally if that’s what it eventually comes down to.  

Starbucks will cover travel for workers seeking abortions

Starbucks says it will pay travel expenses for U.S. employees to access abortion or gender-confirmation procedures if those services aren't available within 100 miles of a worker’s home. The Seattle coffee chain says the benefit will also be available to dependents of employees enrolled in its health care coverage. Starbucks is among the most high-profile companies that have adopted a travel benefit in the wake of a leaked draft opinion from the Supreme Court that would abolish the nationwide right to abortion. Amazon is also covering up to $4,000 in travel and lodging expenses for employees seeking abortions or gender-confirmation procedures.