Gov. Gavin Newsom joined his counterparts from Oregon and Washington on June 24 to proclaim the states as safe havens for women seeking abortion following the U.S. Supreme Court’s overturning of the Roe v. Wade—the landmark 1973 precedent which largely legalized the procedure nationwide.
As a result of the Supreme Court ruling, each state now has the option to come up with its own abortion policies.
“We will not sit on the sidelines and allow patients who seek reproductive care in our states or the doctors that provide that care to be intimidated with criminal prosecution,” Newsom said in a statement. “We refuse to go back and we will fight like hell to protect our rights and our values.”
Newsom, along with Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, issued a joint statement to show their commitment to defending access to abortion, contraceptives, and other related services, and to protecting doctors and patients “against efforts by other states to export their abortion bans to our states.”
In a statement of her own, Brown said, “You cannot ban abortion, you can only ban safe abortions.”
“And this disgraceful Supreme Court decision will undoubtedly put many people’s lives at risk, in addition to stripping away a constitutional right that disproportionately affects women and has been settled law for most of our lifetimes,” she said.
Inslee added, “The right of choice should not depend on which party holds the majority, but that’s where we find ourselves. More than half the nation’s population now lacks safe access to a medical procedure that only a patient and their doctor can and should make for themselves.”
According to the 116-page Supreme Court ruling, the U.S. Constitution has no reference to abortion as a right to be protected.
“The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision, including the one on which the defenders of Roe and Casey now chiefly rely—the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote.