Jul. 8 () –
The President of the United States, Joe Biden, has signed this Friday an executive order to defend abortion for American women, two weeks after the Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade ruling that protected for the first time and since 1973 this right without restrictions during the first trimester of pregnancy.
“This is not an imaginary horror. It’s already happening,” she said of the Supreme Court’s ruling, which was also welcomed by states governed by the Republican Party, which had previously maneuvered to make it difficult for women to freely access this right.
Accompanied by Vice President Kamala Harris and Health Secretary Xavier Becerra, Biden described the ruling as “extreme” and “totally wrong” and recounted the recent episode of a 10-year-old girl who was forced to travel outside the state of Indiana to undergo an abortion after being the victim of rape.
“A 10-year-old girl was a rape victim, 10 years old, and was forced to have to travel out of state to Indiana to try to end the pregnancy and perhaps save her life. Imagine being that girl. I mean it, imagine being that girl. 10 years old!” emphasized Biden during the act of signing the decree.
In recent weeks President Biden has faced strong pressure from civil society groups and sectors of his Democratic Party to take stronger action to protect abortion rights, especially in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court decision.
The order urges the Department of Health to take measures to ensure access to abortion medication, seeks to increase the protection of health care providers who perform these practices under the Emergency Medical Labor and Treatment Act, as well as the privacy of patients and to strengthen awareness campaigns in public facilities.
However, the measure does not include some proposals such as that of the Democratic governor of Michigan, Gretchen Whitmer, to be able to legally transport the abortion pill across the border of the United States and Canada, or to allow abortion to be performed on federal government property within those states where this right is prohibited.
Biden has acknowledged that he can do nothing to restore nationwide the right to abortion in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling, so he has asked citizens in the midterm elections to elect members of Congress who have come out in favor of upholding federal laws that shield it.
By removing the character of a constitutional right, the Supreme’s ruling clears the way for states to enforce its ban, amid a dispute over a 2018 law passed by Mississippi’s Republican legislature to ban abortions after 15 weeks.