Aryana Noroozi |
California lawmakers voted on Monday to advance a constitutional amendment that will explicitly protect abortion rights.
In November, Californians will vote on the measure. It does require the signature of Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), who is in support.
If passed, the amendment will continue to support abortion rights that are already protected in the state. The reason for this amendment is a safeguard; California’s constitution includes a right to privacy that the courts have always interpreted as protecting abortion, however California lawmakers want to ensure that these reproductive rights are explicitly protected after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last week.
Passage of the measure will make California among the first states in the nation to enshrine the right to abortion and contraception in its constitution. Currently, legislators in blue leaning states across the country are working to protect and enshrine the right to abortions within their own state constitutions.
Toni G. Atkins (D), president pro tempore of the state Senate, says California remains committed to protecting access to abortion but this amendment is critical to make sure this is always the case no matter who is in power. “I don’t want people to think we are safe here just because we have a constitution that guarantees a right to privacy — it doesn’t say abortion.”