You're told that you can't actually act on your decision until you jump through all the hoops that the state where you live has put out in front of you. — Elisabeth Smith, the director of state policy and advocacy at the Center for Reproductive Rights
You're told that you can't actually act on your decision until you jump through all the hoops that the state where you live has put out in front of you. — Elisabeth Smith, the director of state policy and advocacy at the Center for Reproductive Rights

The procedure bans are a way that anti-abortion folks can try to define abortion care and define this medical procedure ... in a way that makes people oppose it. — Elisabeth Smith, the director of state policy and advocacy at the Center for Reproductive Rights
The procedure bans are a way that anti-abortion folks can try to define abortion care and define this medical procedure ... in a way that makes people oppose it. — Elisabeth Smith, the director of state policy and advocacy at the Center for Reproductive Rights

What abortion access looks like in America even before the Supreme Court reconsiders Roe v. Wade
Since the 1973 decision that enshrined a constitutional right to an abortion, activists and their partners in statehouses across the country have enacted more than 1,300 laws that have made the procedure more difficult to obtain.

Five states have only one clinic within their borders, and in large swaths of the country, abortion-seekers must travel for miles to obtain the procedure. States also impose limits, like waiting periods, parental consent requirements, advice mandates and restrictions on the specific types of procedures offered.

About 580 of such restrictions have been enacted just in the last decade, according to the reproductive rights think tank Guttmacher Institute. These restrictions compound upon each other, and particularly in states in the South and Midwest, abortion patients face not one or two, but several separate obstacles to obtaining the procedure.

... "You're told that you can't actually act on your decision until you jump through all the hoops that the state where you live has put out in front of you," said Elisabeth Smith, the director of state policy and advocacy at the Center for Reproductive Rights. "That is all that is all meant to make the person seeking abortion care feel the stigma that anti-abortion folks believe it is true."


This incremental approach to limiting access is, all at once, a strategy of policy, politics and law. By focusing on laws that chip away at the availability of the procedure, anti-abortion activists have secured key court decisions upholding those laws that have helped inch the Supreme Court closer to rethinking Roe, while keeping the issue in the national conversation.

... Since Roe, federal courts have been mostly skeptical of laws that ban abortion before viability. But other restrictions that target abortion based on the type of procedure offered have been broadly successful in limiting women's options based on where they are in their pregnancies.

Several states have sought to ban an abortion procedure known as D&E, or "dilation and evacuation," the method most commonly used for women in their second trimester. Texas' ban was recently upheld by a federal appeals court.

Medication abortion -- in which patients terminate their pregnancies by use of pills -- have also become a target of legislators in places like Texas, which recently enacted a law threatening felony punishment for physicians who provide medication abortion pills without meeting the state's informed consent requirements. Nineteen states effectively outlaw the use of telemedicine in administration of medication abortion.

The laws, outside their practical effects, also carry a political impact.

"The procedure bans are a way that anti-abortion folks can try to define abortion care and define this medical procedure ... in a way that makes people oppose to it," Smith, of the Center for Reproductive Rights said, pointing to how anti-abortion activists have rebranded medication abortion as "chemical abortion."
Read the full article: https://www.cnn.com/2021/10/09/politics/abortion-restrictions-roe-v-wade-access-supreme-court/index.html