Alyson Nordstrom, 17, knew that the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade would result in the girls and women of her community losing their rights to obtain an abortion entirely. Despite the challenges of fighting for a blue issue in a red state, Nordstrom helped form Teens for Reproductive Rights, a coalition of teens who organize fundraisers for abortion care, post infographics about current abortion restrictions in Tennessee and encourage teenagers to vote.
On Sept. 30, 1976, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Hyde Amendment, which barred federal funds from covering abortions with the narrowest exceptions for rape, incest or threats to a patient’s life. As soon as Hyde went into effect, the number of Medicaid-covered abortions in the United States dropped from 300,000 to just a few thousand.
Abortion, like all healthcare, should be a human right—not merely a benefit of select insurance plans.
On Wednesday, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments in the case of Illinois v. Ferriero—a lawsuit brought against the national archivist to compel him to publish the Equal Rights Amendment as the 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The lawsuit was brought by two of the three final states to ratify the ERA: Nevada and Illinois. Immediately following the oral arguments, ERA advocates held a press conference and a rally outside the court.
“We are hopeful that this will result in the certification of the ERA,” said Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), co-sponsor of H.J. Res. 28, the Equal Rights Amendment.
U.S. patriarchal authoritarianism is on the rise, and democracy is on the decline. But day after day, we stay vigilant in our goals to dismantle patriarchy at every turn. The fight is far from over. We are watching, and we refuse to go back.
The last month has been a real whiplash for women. Let’s remember what was hurled our way. Plus—as we approach the midterm elections, Republican lawmakers have continued the ruthless attack on abortion access nationwide. But will it cost them?
This month, we mark the one-year anniversary of two significant moments in reproductive rights history: the landmark decision in Mexico to decriminalize abortion, and the near-total abortion ban in Texas. With reproductive rights moving in such different directions, what can the U.S. learn from the progress feminists are seeing in Latin America?
Will historical trends in midterm elections be uprooted? Will the party in the White House not face devastating losses in Congress? Is it possible that Republican promises to pass legislation that would ban abortion in every U.S. state could, in fact, help Democrats hold on to their majorities in both the House and the Senate?
“Between guns, abortion and the Republicans’ behavior, people will be concerned enough to go to the polls,” said Roger Craver, cofounder of the government watchdog group Common Cause. “And a big turnout will be very important because that’s what will give Democrats the win.”
On Saturday in Arizona, a 15-week abortion ban—signed into law on July 6 by Republican Gov. Doug Ducey—was set to take effect. But before it could, a late Friday ruling from Pima County Superior Court Judge Kellie Johnson green-lighted an anti-abortion law from 1864 that supersedes all other bans, outlawing almost all abortions in the state and penalizing abortion providers who provide the service with two to five years in prison. Abortion is now effectively illegal in the state, making it the 15th U.S. state currently enforcing extreme or total bans on abortion.
There’s a little over a month until the midterm elections, and Arizona is a battleground for federal and state elections. Democrats see the extreme law as an opportunity to mobilize voters.
Last week, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on six more of President Biden’s nominees to U.S. federal courts. Included among the impressive slate of nominees was civil rights lawyer Julie Rikelman, who is nominated to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. “I wanted to be an attorney because I believe so deeply in our justice system and the promise of equal justice for all,” Rikelman said during her confirmation hearing.
Public trust in the judiciary is bolstered when courts better reflect the diversity of our country. Confirming Julie Rikelman will ensure a court that better reflects and represents the experiences of all people in America.
State attorneys general are touted as the “people’s lawyers”—yet the majority are white and male.
The office of attorney general is the central legal division of the states and exists in all 50 states. Attorneys general dictate the state’s law enforcement priorities as well as where resources flow. Almost half of all U.S. states have never had a woman in the role.
In 2017, a year into the presidency of Donald Trump, three notable women—Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza, former Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards, and executive director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, Ai-jen Poo—looked to harness the sudden rage and confusion felt by women across the U.S. Garza, Poo and Richards announced the start of a women’s equality organization called Supermajority, a multiracial coalition of women organizing around issues like paid leave and affordable healthcare. The group’s name hearkens to the fact that women make up more than half of the U.S. population.
These days, Amanda Brown Lierman is the executive director of both Supermajority and the Supermajority Education Fund, a sister nonprofit organization for research, education and development programs that prepare women civic leaders. And Lierman and her team have their eye on the prize: the 2022 midterms.