This November, an attempt to ban abortion at 22 weeks will be on Colorado’s ballot. You may be wondering: as our nation grapples with a global pandemic, why would anti-abortion activists focus on removing health care options from patients? Well, it’s because this ban has nothing to do with protecting pregnant people and their health—it has everything to do with a nationwide anti-reproductive rights agenda to ban all abortion care.
Here are five things you need to know about the abortion ban:
1. 22-week abortion bans are unconstitutional.
Banning abortion after 22 weeks is a clear attempt to erode Roe v. Wade. In fact, 22-week ban proponents are outspoken about their goal to challenge the 1973 Supreme Court decision protecting the right to safe and legal abortion. Beginning with attempts like these to ban abortion after 22 weeks, anti-abortion advocates are pushing their agenda, bit by bit, to ultimately outlaw abortion completely.
2. Roe v. Wade is popular.
Let’s be clear: overturning Roe v. Wade is not what Coloradans want. Today, 73% of Americans support the constitutional right to access abortion, including 6 out of 10 Republicans and 9 out of 10 Democrats. Even more, only one third of Americans who identify as not “pro-choice” want Roe v. Wade overturned. This monumental Supreme Court ruling is popular for a reason—the vast majority of Americans agree that abortion needs to remain safe, legal, and accessible.
3. This ban does not make exceptions for rape, incest, or health concerns for the pregnant person.
When abortion care happens after 22-weeks, it is often due to complex circumstances — for example, severe fetal diagnoses or serious risks to the pregnant person's health — the kinds of situations where patients and their health care providers need every medical option available. If we care about the health of Coloradans, we shouldn’t be taking options away from health care providers in complex medical situations or prevent them from informing patients about all their health care options.
Abortion is health care. Before this health care was legal and safe, illegal abortions caused at least 1 in 6 pregnancy-related deaths.
4. Colorado is a safe haven for abortion access.
Many of our neighboring states are hostile to reproductive rights. In April, a few weeks after Texas Governor Abbott’s order to suspend abortion care during the pandemic, Planned Parenthood health centers in Colorado saw a more than ten-fold increase in patients travelling from Texas. Colorado must remain a safe haven for abortion care so we can continue to welcome patients in our region with open arms when care may not be accessible in their local communities.
5. Coloradans have said “no” to abortion bans at the ballot box three times already.
Reproductive freedom is a deeply held Colorado value. This November, Coloradans will fight to protect our right to make health care decisions without political interference and keep the #BansOffColorado.
We need your support in this fight.
Join us to protect abortion access in our state.