Welcome to “The Quickie” — Planned Parenthood Action Fund’s daily tipsheet on the top health care & reproductive rights stories of the day.
PLANNED PARENTHOOD LAUNCHES BILLBOARD SERIES TO HIGHLIGHT STATE OF ABORTION ACCESS: This week, Planned Parenthood Federation of America launched a series of billboards in access states to highlight where patients can seek abortions. The billboards will run near airports and at the borders of states that continue to protect abortion rights since the fall of Roe v. Wade. The initial billboards will run in five states—California, Colorado, New Mexico, New York, and Maryland—and billboards in additional states will run in the coming weeks and months.
People who pass the billboards will see the message, “You Are Entering [STATE NAME], which protects abortion rights. AbortionFinder.org.” Ads in New Mexico will run in both English and Spanish. Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said in a statement today:
“Every single day, patients are leaving their homes and driving hundreds of miles across state lines to get the care they need. As more bans take effect, it is critical that people know where and how they can get care, and understand that no matter where you live, abortion access is an issue that affects us all.”
AS ANTI-ABORTION POLITICIANS DOUBLE DOWN ON A NATIONAL ABORTION BAN, DEMOCRATS ZERO IN ON ANTI-ABORTION CANDIDATES ACROSS THE COUNTRY: With only 50 days to go until the midterms, candidates, party committees, and advocacy groups are not holding back on attacking anti-abortion Republicans in key battleground states. In a recent Huffington Post article, Jenny Lawson, executive director of Planned Parenthood Votes, described the importance of calling out Republicans on their unpopular anti-abortion positions:
“The threat to abortion rights used to be theoretical, but people now understand and believe the real impact — that candidates want to ban abortion and can ban abortion — and they are scared and they believe them.”
Making the threat to reproductive rights even more real is Congressional Republicans’ proposed national abortion ban, which Lindsey Graham has promised Republicans would vote on if given control of Congress. And after doubling down on the national ban in an appearance on Fox News Sunday, Republican candidates across the country will be forced to reveal where they stand.
PENNSYLVANIA BECOMES CRITICAL ACCESS STATE, WITH AN UNCERTAIN FUTURE: With limited access to abortion in Ohio and a total ban in West Virginia, Pennsylvania has become a critical access state in the region, experiencing an estimated 25 percent increase in out-of-state patients seeking abortions. As the Philadelphia Inquirer noted in a piece today, Pennsylvania has only 17 abortion clinics total and just two clinics in Western Pennsylvania, the closest region to people seeking abortions from ban states that have more than 600,000 women of reproductive age.
The influx in patients has put tremendous strain on the limited number of clinics in the state. While abortion is currently legal and accessible in Pennsylvania, the future of access in the region remains uncertain with midterm races set to determine if abortion will remain legal in the state. Alexis McGill Johnson, CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, told a roundtable inPhiladelphia last week: “The infrastructure has already been eroded. I don't know what the tipping point is.”
Read more at the Philadelphia Inquirer.
SATIRE–BUT REAL LIFE. NATIONAL REPUBLICANS PRETEND THEY DON’T SUPPORT A FEDERAL ABORTION BAN: Last week, Senator Lindsey Graham introduced a national abortion ban. Even though Republican lawmakers have been passing highly restrictive abortion bans at the state level with the approval of national Republicans, some Congressional Republicans are pretending to not support the federal abortion ban bill, as Alexandra Petri hilariously points out in the Washington Post. Petri jokes, mimicking Senate leadership:
“Do not make the mistake of not voting for Republicans because you think we might want to implement some sort of nationwide abortion ban! We just want to ban abortion first in one state, then another, then another, and we want to do that 50 times in total — until all the states have banned abortion! This is very different.”
Read the full piece at Washington Post.