On Wednesday, in a 51-49 vote the United States Senate failed to pass the Women’s Health Protection with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) voting with Republicans.
“They’re trying to make people believe that this is the same thing as codifying Roe v. Wade,” Manchin said to Politico. “And I want you to know; it’s not. This is not the same. It expands abortion.”
But in reality, the Women’s Health Protection Act federally protects a person’s right to an abortion. And removes medically unjustified restrictions conservative states created to puts barriers up for pregnant people to access an abortion.
Nonetheless, according to a recent poll by The University of Texas, most Americans and Texans support some form of access to abortion.
This failed vote comes after a leaked SCOTUS draft showcased the inevitable that conservatives in the Supreme Court are poised to overturn Roe v. Wade by June 2022. So federal abotion protections will be non-existent with state officials deciding the terms of abortion.
13 states, including Texas, have already signed Trigger laws that would ban all abortions 30 days after the official SCOTUS ruling.
Over the weekend, pro-abortion groups held vigils outside Supreme Court Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Samuel Alito’s houses to protest the demise of federally protected abortion rights.
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz even compared the pro-abortion protestors to the right-wing insurrectionist on January 6 at the U.S. Capitol. Despite video footage showing protestors with no guns, flags, and nooses insight. There is a stark difference from the insurrection that left five people dead and over 140 people injured.
In reality, the slight discomfort conservative justices are feeling from protestors is just a fraction of what people of color and, more specifically, what pregnant people face every day when walking into an abortion clinic to seek care.
Nevertheless, Republicans and Democrats caved to the fearmongering led by the right-wing that Justice Alito and Kavanaugh are unsafe.
On Monday, in a unanimous vote, the U.S. Senate passed the Supreme Court Police Parity Act, which grants justices and their families federal protections.
“Threats to the physical safety of Supreme Court Justices and their families are disgraceful, and attempts to intimidate and influence the independence of our judiciary cannot be tolerated,” Texas Sen. John Cornyn, the author of the bill, said. “I’m glad the Senate quickly approved this measure to extend Supreme Court police protection to family members, and the House must take up and pass it immediately.” In an interview with the Signal last week, Avow Texas, an abortion advocacy group, Political Director Caroline Duble said, “The best thing someone can do if they find out they are pregnant in a post-Roe world is to visit needabortion.org, nationally ineedana.org.”
Lorie Shaull / Wikimedia Commons
Kennedy is a recent graduate of the University of St.Thomas in Houston where she served as Editor-in-Chief of the Celt Independent. Kennedy brings her experience of writing about social justice issues to the Texas Signal where she serves as our Political Reporter. She does everything from covering crime beats, Texas politics, and community activism. Kennedy is a passionate reporter, avid reader, coffee enthusiast, and loves to travel.