Fifty-five days. That’s how long the country has before the 2022 midterm elections. And while polls show that the reversal of Roe v. Wade has been harmful to Republican poll numbers, it has not stopped the Right from pushing for an all-out abortion ban.
On Monday, Vice President Kamala Harris continued her crusade for the codification of Roe, meeting with civil rights leaders to discuss the importance of coming together in the spirit of partnership, collaboration, community building, and coalition building to form a movement to help fight the attacks on reproductive rights. “When we think of the intersection between the civil rights movement and the reproductive health and justice movement, there is an extraordinary intersection of interests, priorities and spirit around what it means to stand for all people and ensure that all people have equal access to what they need,” Harris said at Monday’s roundtable.
Since the leaked draft of the Supreme Court’s decision on Roe, abortion rights activists have been rallying against the decision. While the war on reproductive rights affects all races, for Black women, the consequences of the decision feel more dire. “The fight for reproductive freedom is a fight for racial justice, and it's really a fight for our very democracy,” Alexis McGill Johnson, the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America said on Monday. She noted that in the nearly three months since the Supreme Court took away our constitutional right to abortion.
The insistence from the right of a full-on ban was evident in Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-S.C.) proposed national abortion restriction bill, which would ban abortion after 15 weeks. Noreen Farrell, Executive Director of Equal Rights Advocates (ERA) calls the bill “outrageous and out of touch.” In a statement shared with EBONY, she added, “Millions across the country, including corporate employers, had risen up to oppose the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade and state restrictions on abortion bans that soon followed. Republicans in Congress are not listening. This proposed national abortion ban doubles down to turn back progress on reproductive health care access critical to women’s economic security and progress in the workplace. Not surprising, and by design, this policy will harm women of color and low paid working women most, exacerbating existing economic inequality.”
For civil rights leaders and the White House, there is no turning back. “I want to be very, very clear. We are living in unprecedented times. Our people are experiencing a full partisan assault on our rights. our freedoms and our democracy, including the historic attack on women's rights to control our own bodies, and a tsunami of attacks across the country on our voting rights as Black women,” said Melanie Campbell, the President and CEO of Black Women’s Roundtable. “I believe that it's my responsibility to fight to ensure that women continue to have the constitutional right to bodily autonomy now in the future, and we are committed to fusing our movements together to also protect our rights, voting rights and save our democracy from peril.”