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As the nation continues to gauge the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, some Texas Democrats and abortion advocates called on the Biden administration to take immediate and direct action to protect Texans’ access to abortion.
First on their list of demands in a letter to the White House was that President Joe Biden declare a public health emergency to ensure that telehealth providers can dispense abortion-inducing drugs without interruption.
“President Biden can provide a tremendous amount of support by making sure that you can see a health care provider, call them on the phone, talk to them via telehealth, and then get an over-the-counter medication abortion. mail into the state from a state where abortion is. It’s not currently banned,” said Greg Casar, a Democratic candidate for Congress. He was part of a group that presented the strategy in Dallas, where state Democrats were holding their convention. More more than 50 state and federal lawmakers, candidates and abortion advocacy groups signed the letter to the White House.
That letter also included demands to support abortion funds nationwide, increase legal protections for reproductive health care providers, create a program to increase the distribution of abortion drugs, and invoke the federal government’s supremacy on state laws that conflict with the Food and Drug Administration. Administration-approved regimen for medically induced abortions.
Since the Supreme Court’s decision, Biden has talked about changes at the federal level to address access to abortion. He has said he supports a change in the US Senate’s filibuster rules to help move legislation legalizing abortion rights. His administration has also issued guidance saying doctors can perform emergency abortions — that guidance is now the subject of a lawsuit filed by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office. On Friday, the US House of Representatives passed a bill that would protect a person’s right to travel interstate to seek an abortion.
Republican Texas lawmakers have said that even with Roe v. Wade overturned, they still have work to do. They have cited a stronger focus on improving the state’s adoption programs and preventing pregnant Texans from leaving the state for abortions.
Urging Biden to declare a public health emergency to protect providers who dispense abortion drugs via telehealth, Texas Democrats and abortion rights advocates said Biden could overturn the state’s ban on these treatments after 7 weeks of pregnancy by called the Public Preparedness and Emergency Preparedness Act. .
The letter also called for support of out-of-state abortion funds and telehealth organizations that can provide abortion drugs to Texas residents. Democratic leaders created a program in which federal government employees could volunteer to distribute medication for abortions. “Because they are federal employees or federal contractors, choosing to do this work, they would actually be immune from state lawsuits,” Casar said Saturday.
The end of Roe v. Wade has left Texas in a state of uncertainty given the state’s muddled reproductive health care laws. The work of abortion funds, which help individuals pay for an abortion, has been halted at home and abroad. Medical professionals have similarly expressed confusion about what care they can provide, which experts say can lead to patients being turned away or receiving delayed treatments.
Caroline Duble, political director of Avow Texas, an abortion rights advocacy group, called for Biden’s support for medication abortion as one of the last viable options for those who cannot travel out of state. “People in Texas and across this country will continue to need and seek abortions, which in this political landscape will result in the criminalization and surveillance of pregnant people,” she said. “Like any increased oversight, this will fall hardest on people of color and indigenous people, undocumented people, low-income families, young Texans, and queer and trans people.”
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