Kamala Harris photo

ICYMI: Vice President Harris Continues the Fight for Reproductive Rights

October 10, 2022

The Vice President has brought together leaders from across the nation who are on the frontlines fighting to protect a woman's right to make her own reproductive health decisions. Last week, the Vice President participated in conversations about reproductive rights in New Britain, Connecticut, and in Austin, Texas. She also convened the second meeting of the Task Force on Reproductive Health Care Access.

Since May, the Vice President has held more than 20 convenings about the fight to protect reproductive rights. She has met with 150+ state legislators from 18 states to discuss protecting reproductive rights. The Vice President has also convened health care providers, constitutional law experts, faith leaders, state attorneys general, disability rights leaders, higher education leaders, students, and advocates.

Read more below:

Saturday, October 8, 2022: the Vice President traveled to Austin, Texas where she joined Mini Timmaraju, President of NARAL Pro-Choice America, and Julieta Garibay, Senior Capacity Building Director for Groundswell Fund, for a moderated conversation on the Biden-Harris Administration's commitment to protecting reproductive rights. The audience included advocates from NARAL, Planned Parenthood, the Austin community, and more, as Texas continues to fight on the frontlines for reproductive rights.

The Texas Tribune: Vice President Kamala Harris calls on Texans to protect reproductive and voting rights during Austin visit
By: William Melhado and Trent Brown
October 8, 2022

Vice President Kamala Harris on Saturday called Texas' abortion ban "immoral" and urged Texans to protect reproductive rights when considering their choices in the upcoming November elections.

"A democracy will be as strong as our willingness to fight for it," she said during a discussion on reproductive rights at the LBJ Presidential Library on the University of Texas at Austin campus, part of a daylong trip that ended with an appearance at a downtown fundraiser for Texas Democrats.

While Harris stressed the importance of voting not only for a governor and attorney general who support reproductive rights, she also noted local elections were also crucial, especially when it comes to choosing a prosecutor. District attorneys will now have to decide whether to prosecute Texas doctors and health care workers if they perform an abortion not meant to save the life of the pregnant patient.

The Dallas Morning News: In Texas, VP Kamala Harris urges voters to push back on 'immoral' abortion ban
By: Todd Gillman
October 8, 2022

One month before Election Day, Vice President Kamala Harris visited Austin on Saturday and, calling Texas' abortion ban "immoral," urged voters to install prosecutors and state officials who will not try to imprison abortion providers. […]

Consider, she said, what it means to have a ban that doesn't even allow abortion in cases of rape or incest.

"The idea that there would be a policy and an approach that would say to someone who has survived an extreme act of violence and violation … [that] you do not have the autonomy, the authority as it relates to your body that has just withstood that act to make a decision about what happens to your body next, is immoral.

"It's truly immoral," Harris said. "The government shouldn't be making this decision for her. It is absolutely about freedom. It is about liberty."

The Hill: Harris presses Texas Democrats on reproductive, voting rights in Austin remarks
By Zach Schonfeld
October 9, 2022

The vice president also lambasted Abbott and other Republicans nationwide for enacting restrictions on abortion in the wake of the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

"They believe government, not women, should make decisions about their own bodies," Harris said. "Well, we do not. We do not. We trust the women of America. We trust the women of Texas."

She also took aim at Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-S.C.) proposal to ban abortion nationwide at 15 weeks, which has garnered some support from within his party, while drawing concerns from others who say the issue should be left to states. […]

Harris applauded the thousands of women who registered to vote in Texas since the court's abortion decision, urging them to support the state's Democratic nominee for governor, Beto O'Rourke, and other candidates hoping to flip House seats blue in November.

"So, in the next 31 days, Texas Democrats, let us fight like we never have before, because when we fight, we win," Harris said.

Wednesday, October 5, 2022: Vice President Harris visited New Britain, Connecticut and joined a reproductive rights conversation moderated by Representative Jahana Hayes (CT- 05) and Alexis McGill Johnson, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, to engage students, volunteers, parents, elected officials, and members of the New Britain community. The Vice President's visit highlighted Connecticut's leadership in protecting and expanding reproductive rights.

Hartford Courant: VP Kamala Harris defends abortion rights in Connecticut with U.S. Rep. Jahana Hayes 34 days before election
By: Christopher Keating
October 5, 2022

With 34 days before the election, Vice President Kamala Harris traveled to New Britain Wednesday to show her support for the most controversial issue in the divisive campaign in the 5th Congressional District — abortion rights. […]

Toward the end of the roundtable discussion, Harris delivered a statement that drew some of the most applause of the day.

"One does not have to abandon their faith or their beliefs to agree that the government should not be making that decision for her,'' Harris said.

Hartford Courant: Vice President Kamala Harris receives roar of approval in college visit; anti-abortion students turn out to protest
By: Deidre Montague
October 5, 2022

The room erupted in thunderous applause after U.S. Rep. Jahana Hayes welcomed Vice President Kamala Harris onto the stage Wednesday at Central Connecticut State University.

Harris joined Hayes and Planned Parenthood CEO and President Alexis McGill Johnson to discuss the federal action that is being taken to defend access to reproductive care in the nation.

CCSU students and local community leaders loudly cheered as the vice president walked onto the stage at Davidson Hall.

Monday, October 3, 2022: Vice President Harris convened the second meeting of the Task Force on Reproductive Health Care Access. The task force was established in the Executive Order President Biden signed on July 8, as part of the Administration's response to the Supreme Court decision in Dobbs.

This second meeting focused on the impact of the Dobbs decision on patients and health care providers. In addition to providing updates on agency actions to protect access to reproductive health care, Task Force members heard testimony from doctors.

CNN: It's been 100 days since Roe was overturned. Here's what the White House is doing in response
By: Betsy Klein
October 4, 2022

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on Tuesday will mark 100 days since Roe v. Wade was overturned by the Supreme Court with the second meeting of the administration's Task Force on Reproductive Health Care Access.

The President and vice president are set to announce two additional steps toward boosting abortion protections at the meeting, which is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. ET. White House Gender Policy Council director Jen Klein said in a 100-day report obtained by CNN that the moves build on existing efforts toward protecting reproductive health care at the federal level, including executive actions announced over the summer.

CNN: Biden says he's not going to 'sit by' and let Republicans enact 'extreme policies' on reproductive rights
By: Betsy Klein, Allie Malloy and Maegan Vazquez
October 4, 2022

President Joe Biden said on Tuesday that his administration is not going to "sit by and let Republicans throughout the country enact extreme policies" when it comes to reproductive health care, announcing new steps to enhance abortion protections as he marked 100 days after Roe v. Wade was overturned. […]

Biden and Harris were joined at Tuesday's meeting by Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough, Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young and Office of Science and Technology Policy Dr. Arati Prabhakar.

Reuters: Biden, doctors say new abortion laws have chilling impact
By: Nandita Bose
October 4, 2022

U.S. President Joe Biden and top White House officials announced new guidelines and grants to protect abortion and contraception rights on Tuesday, and said women's rights have already been curtailed since the Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade 100 days ago.

Speaking at a meeting of the reproductive rights task force, with Vice President Kamala Harris, Biden said the decision that rescinded women's constitutional right to an abortion has had frightening ripple effects in some states, include restricting a teen's access to medicine she needed for arthritis. "We're not going to sit by and let Republicans throughout the country enact extreme policies," he said.

CNBC: Biden attacks GOP abortion policies in speech marking 100 days since Supreme Court overturned Roe
By: Emma Kinery
October 4, 2022

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris highlighted the GOP's push to roll back access to abortion in remarks Tuesday, 100 days since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade's constitutional right to terminate an unwanted pregnancy.

"Today, extremist so-called leaders are attacking the freedom and liberty of millions of women at a state level. In Arizona for example a judge recently upheld an 1864 — that's not a statute, that's the year — 1864 abortion ban with no exceptions for rape or incest," Harris said, noting a similar ban from 1849 in Wisconsin. "That was 173 years ago. And make note that at that time women also did not have the right to vote.

Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris spoke at the event, rolling out new guidelines from the Department of Education reminding universities of their requirements to protect access to reproductive health-care as well as $6 million in new grants to protect and expand reproductive services, according to Klein's memo.

Kamala Harris, ICYMI: Vice President Harris Continues the Fight for Reproductive Rights Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/358314

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