WASHINGTON – Representative Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, issued the following statement in response to the Supreme Court ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Center, which overturns the constitutional right to abortion:
“Today, a decades-long project of the extreme right-wing has come to fruition: the Supreme Court has overturned the constitutional right to abortion established in Roe v. Wade. As one of the one in four women in this country who has had an abortion, I am outraged for what this will mean for those who need abortion care — particularly those who will be most harmed by this decision: Black and Brown women, those who live in rural areas or have lower incomes and can’t afford to cross state lines for care, young people and LGBTQ people, and women in abusive relationships. The Supreme Court has now mandated forced pregnancy, taking away an intensely personal freedom for pregnant people to make decisions about our own bodies with a doctor or loved one, and instead bringing politicians into your decision and your bedroom. Every woman, every family, every pregnant person should fear what this means for their futures.
“As a member of the House Judiciary Committee, I am furious that right-wing extremists and Republican Senators have warped the Supreme Court into a partisan political body that does not respect decades of precedent or the fundamental freedoms of millions of Americans. These five justices were appointed by two presidents who lost the popular vote, yet have overturned what was a 7-2 decision in 1973, a decision that 69 percent of Americans across the political spectrum support today and that Americans have considered settled for half a century. This decision makes it clear that this Supreme Court is far out of step with the American people and taking us backwards, not forward.
“It is important that Americans understand that this Supreme Court and Republicans in Congress will not stop here. In Justice Thomas’s concurrence, he says explicitly that the Court should reconsider ‘all substantive due process precedents,’ including right to contraception, to same-sex marriage, and to same-sex relationships. It is clear that he has no respect for other precedents that have been won in recent decades. This Supreme Court is out of touch with the American people and increasingly suffers a legitimacy crisis.
“House Democrats have passed bills to protect LGBTQ rights and abortion rights, as well as to end discriminatory insurance coverage bans on abortion to expand access — but all have been blocked by Republicans in the Senate. Those Senators who voted no have an obligation to reconsider their decision — and the devastation facing this country if they don’t. We need to reform the filibuster, so a Jim Crow procedure is not standing the way of action to protect people’s human rights. But we also clearly need not just a Democratic majority, but a clear pro-choice majority in the Senate, as we do in the House. All of us must continue to take this righteous anger to the streets and to the voting booths. But most immediately, we must channel our anger into organizing and make it clear the right to abortion is on the ballot this November.”