The hard work that Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund volunteers have done over the last year, urging presidential candidates to talk about reproductive rights, coalesces today as voters head to the polls in the First in the Nation Primary.
The election arrives just days after the New Hampshire Democratic Debate, during which the candidates provided “their most substantive debate statements to date on abortion,” The New York Times notes. That’s because presidential candidates understand that reproductive rights will be one of the top issues on Granite State voters’ minds as they head to the polls today.
Support for abortion rights in New Hampshire is higher than almost anywhere else in the country, and the state has one of the most positive political climates for reproductive health care in the country. Still, over the past two weeks, New Hampshire legislators held hearings on five anti-abortion bills — including one that would ban abortion before most people even know they’re pregnant. “Voters in New Hampshire, they view abortion [rights] as even more important than even nationally,” CBS News reporter Kate Smith noted ahead of the debate Friday.
Statement from Kayla Montgomery, Director of Advocacy & Organizing for Planned Parenthood NH Action Fund:
“As Granite Staters head to the polls today, they understand that the stakes have never been higher for reproductive rights in New Hampshire and across the country. The Trump-Pence administration is stacking the courts with conservative judges, many with hostile records on reproductive rights, and state legislatures passed 25 abortion bans last year. Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund volunteers have spent the last year attending campaign events throughout the state and pushing candidates to articulate their plans to not only protect, but expand access to reproductive health care. We are so grateful for our many incredible supporters and volunteers who have advanced the conversation on reproductive rights in the Granite State and the country.”
Volunteers in PPNHAF’s Pink Out Program attended more than 50 candidate events throughout the state and took more than 70 selfies with candidates showing they stand with Planned Parenthood. They asked questions covering the spectrum of reproductive health care issues, including addressing abortion stigma, plans to defend abortion rights, combatting misogyny, and the dangers of abortion bans.
Since entering office, Trump has packed the courts in unprecedented and extraordinary ways. 187 Trump-appointed judges now occupy lifetime positions on the federal bench, many with extreme records hostile to reproductive health and rights, and are poised to make decisions about our reproductive rights and health for a generation. For the first time since Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch were seated on the Supreme Court, the court will be hearing arguments in a case this spring that could defy precedent and make the protections of Roe v. Wade virtually meaningless, paving the way for states to effectively ban abortion for over 25 million people of reproductive age.
Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund (PPNHAF) is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England in New Hampshire. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including voter education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy. The Action Fund makes independent expenditures on behalf of or in opposition to targeted candidates for public office. PPNHAF maintains a separate, segregated political committee and fund to make direct campaign contributions to endorsed candidates (the PAC).