FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 21, 2019
Contact: Marisa Rodriguez, [email protected]

Statement from Andrea Miller, President, National Institute for Reproductive Health and NIRH Action Fund

WISCONSIN – With Roe v. Wade in jeopardy and states from Louisiana to Alabama and Missouri to Georgia waging war on reproductive freedom, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers today vetoed a package of four extreme anti-abortion bills, underscoring the importance of electing pro-choice leaders.

Passed by the anti-abortion Wisconsin Senate amid a budget debate earlier this month, the package of bills includes legislation that sought to:

  • Stigmatize abortion, penalize medical providers, and frighten women under the false premise of medical necessity through the latest iteration of deceitful so-called “born alive” legislation;
  • Cut off Medicaid funding for Planned Parenthood, preventing low-income women from accessing care;
  • Prohibit abortions based on the fetus’ race, sex or defects; and,
  • Require providers to tell women seeking abortions using the drug mifepristone that the process may be reversed after the first dose.

Wisconsin is already one of nine states with an archaic criminalization statute still on its books 46 years after Roe made the statute unenforceable. If the Court were to overturn or gut the protections afforded by Roe, abortion could again become a criminal offense in Wisconsin – and these bills would only further erode and chip away at access to abortion care.

“Today, as anti-abortion extremists in Wisconsin attempted to strip away a woman’s right to make her own decisions about her body, life, and future, Governor Evers showed voters everywhere the power and importance of electing leaders who demonstrate a commitment to reproductive freedom,” said Andrea Miller, president of the National Institute for Reproductive Health and its Action Fund. “This veto serves as an important reminder for communities across the country that local elections matter. State leaders have tremendous power to protect and expand access to care, especially in the face of unprecedented attacks from Washington, the Supreme Court, and anti-abortion state legislatures. We applaud Governor Evers for standing up as an example of the leadership Wisconsinites deserve.”

For more than a decade, NIRH has been a leader in the fight to advance reproductive freedom across the country. Recently, they were integral to the successful effort to repeal an outdated criminal abortion ban in Massachusetts, and they led the fight to pass New York’s landmark Reproductive Health Act. Earlier this year, NIRH published a report tracking the passage of more than 100 bills to advance reproductive health, rights, and justice in 27 states and the District of Columbia.

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The National Institute for Reproductive Health builds power at the state and local level to change public policy, galvanize public support, and normalize women’s decisions about abortion and contraception.

Using a partnership model, NIRH provides state and local advocates with strategic guidance, hands-on support, and funding to create national change from the ground up. We form strategic partnerships with a wide range of organizations to directly impact the reproductive health and lives of women across the country. Each year, NIRH works in at least 20 states and more than a dozen localities; to date, NIRH has partnered with more than 170 reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations in 43 states and 64 localities across the country.