State Watch

White House condemns restrictive Oklahoma abortion law

AP-Jeenah Moon
Anti-abortion demonstrators hold signs outside Manhattan federal court during an abortion-rights demonstration, Saturday, May 14, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/Jeenah Moon)

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre condemned a law passed by Oklahoma lawmakers on Thursday that would ban abortions with very limited exceptions.

“Today’s action by the Oklahoma legislature is the most extreme effort to undo these fundamental rights we have seen to date. In addition, it adopts Texas’ absurd plan to allow private citizens to sue their neighbors for providing reproductive health care and helping women to exercise their constitutional rights,” Jean-Pierre said in a statement.

She argued that “ultra MAGA officials” — a reference to former President Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan — were involved in a larger effort to eliminate certain freedoms and rights within the country, warning that others beyond abortion, such as marriage equality and the right to contraception, are also imperiled.

“This is part of a growing effort by ultra MAGA officials across the country to roll back the freedoms we should not take for granted in this country. They are starting with reproductive rights, but the American people need to know that other fundamental rights, including the right to contraception and marriage equality, are at risk,” she said. “The President is committed to standing up for these constitutional rights, and for protecting Americans’ fundamental freedoms.”

The development comes as Oklahoma legislators passed legislation that would effectively prohibit abortion except if the life of the pregnant person is imperiled, or if the pregnancy is the result of a rape that was reported to authorities, according to The Associated Press.

Under the law, similarly to legislation passed in Texas last year, those who provide an abortion or help a pregnant person obtain the procedure could be sued by private citizens. The legislation now awaits Gov. Kevin Stitt’s (R) signature. 

The legislation comes after a leaked Supreme Court draft opinion, purportedly written in February, indicated the high court is prepared to eliminate federal level abortion rights. A final decision in the case is expected in June.

Tags Abortion abortion rights Karine Jean-Pierre Karine Jean-Pierre Kevin Stitt Oklahoma Trump

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