In the aftermath of a likely Supreme Court ruling that would severely restrict abortion rights nationwide in the United States, Biden administration officials are preparing for mass protests and mounting pressure on the White House to act, despite the fact that Biden can do little to mitigate the effects of the expected ruling through executive action.
The upcoming announcement, which is likely within the next two weeks as the Supreme Court closes its term for this term, would culminate months of contingency planning at the White House and lobbying efforts by abortion rights advocates, who want Vice President Biden to take urgent action.
Wednesday, during a videoconference with reproductive rights leaders, Vice President Kamala Harris of the United States raised the alarm. She stated that when the Roe v. Wade verdict is released, “we must be ready to stand a united front.” She highlighted the several obstacles women may soon face when obtaining an abortion, but she did not say when, why, or in what manner the administration is prepared to act after a decision has been made.
Behind the scenes, according to sources involved with the discussions, the President is considering reducing barriers to accessing medical abortions and contesting state laws that punish women traveling outside their home states for an abortion.
Privacy experts have expressed worry to Harris on allegations that law enforcement may utilize period tracking apps to monitor for abortions and that those undergoing in vitro fertilization may have difficulty destroying embryos. Multiple groups representing communities of color and undocumented immigrants have voiced concerns to the White House regarding the ability of women in these groups to seek abortion services across state boundaries. Consequently, a number of state legislators have requested that the federal government commit additional resources to address what they perceive to be an impending crisis.
More on this story via The Republic Brief:
“We’re exploring every option to respond to the upcoming decision … and to protect access to reproductive health care, including abortion,” White House Gender Policy Council Chair Jennifer Klein told Wednesday’s virtual meeting.
As it stands, however, with a federal law prohibiting taxpayer funds from going toward abortion in the vast majority of cases, and a rash of state bans that will almost certainly come into effect as soon as the Supreme Court delivers its ruling, Biden has little that he can do that would substantially restore the right to terminate pregnancy in America. Additionally, his calls for Congress to codify the right to abortion lack enough support in the Senate to pass. Read more…