White House Expands Access to Contraception on Roe Anniversary

Kamala Harris is Democrats' main voice as they hope to highlight abortion, contraception in 2024 election
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 22, 2024 10:30 AM CST
Dems Trot Out Harris as Key to Abortion Rights Fight
Vice President Kamala Harris speaks at the Women's March on April 15 in Los Angeles. Harris is embracing her role as Democrats' leading champion for abortion rights in the 2024 election. She heads to Wisconsin on Monday for the first in a series of events on the issue.   (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

Vice President Kamala Harris is taking center stage in the Democrats' renewed push for abortion rights during this year's election, and she'll mark the 51st anniversary of the Roe v. Wade ruling on Monday in Wisconsin. It will be the first in a series of events hosted by Harris, reports the AP, and comes a day before she joins President Biden at another campaign event focused on abortion in Virginia. In her speech in Wisconsin, Harris plans to hammer former President Trump for saying he's "proud" to have helped overturn Roe v. Wade, which he enabled by nominating three conservative justices to the Supreme Court during his term.

"Proud that women across our nation are suffering?" Harris will say. "Proud that women have been robbed of a fundamental freedom? That doctors could be thrown in prison for caring for patients? That young women today have fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers?" Back in Washington, Biden said in a statement that "tens of millions of women now live in states with extreme and dangerous abortion bans," and "because of Republican elected officials, women's health and lives are at risk." The administration plans to announce new steps Monday to strengthen access to contraception, abortion medication, and emergency abortions, per the Washington Post. Among other things, the White House says it will make free contraceptives available via the Affordable Care Act, and to give federal employees more access to contraception.

Although the loss of Roe v. Wade was a historic defeat for Democrats, the party successfully harnessed anger over the decision during the 2022 midterm elections, and it hopes to do the same this year. The White House has repeatedly turned to Harris to make its case. "One does not have to abandon their faith or deeply held beliefs to agree that the government should not be telling [a woman] what to do with her body," she said recently on The View. "If she chooses she will talk with her priest, her pastor, her rabbi, her imam. But it should not be the government telling her what to do." Noted former Trump rep Kayleigh McEnany: "She brought up abortion again and again and again." No matter the topic, "she pivoted right back to abortion because she knows what is true, which is the GOP has lost every single abortion ballot initiative post-Roe."

(More Kamala Harris stories.)

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