The Times based its work on 2019 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and a study from the Guttmacher Institute, a research group supporting abortion rights. “Although there’s a lot of debate over gestational cutoffs, nearly half of abortions happen in the first six weeks of pregnancy, and nearly all in the first trimester,” Times journalists Margot Sanger-Katz, Claire Cain Miller, and Quoctrung Bui wrote.
The article follows immense criticism of the Supreme Court’s abortion decision, which many considered early evidence of the high court’s inclination to overturn the groundbreaking Roe v. Wade decision protecting abortion rights. The ruling so outraged California Gov. Gavin Newsom that he announced on Saturday a plan to use the ruling to ban assault rifles—weapons of choice for many of the mass murderers the right is conveniently less hesitant to condemn.
“I am outraged by yesterday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing Texas’s ban on most abortion services to remain in place, and largely endorsing Texas’s scheme to insulate its law from the fundamental protections of Roe v. Wade,” Newsom said in a statement. “But if states can now shield their laws from review by the federal courts that compare assault weapons to Swiss Army knives, then California will use that authority to protect people’s lives, where Texas used it to put women in harm’s way.”
New York Attorney General Letitia James similarly told ABC’s The View on Tuesday that she would like to employ the same strategy California is using to aid in gun control. She announced the plan on the ninth anniversary of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. “Given the carnage, and the fact that this is the ninth anniversary of Sandy Hook, I am sick and tired of prayers and individuals whose hearts go out to all of those who have lost lives,” James said. “We can do something about it. And what we need to do is hold these gun manufacturers and gun distributors liable.”
She plans to do that by mirroring the plan Newsom laid out to “work with the Legislature and the Attorney General on a bill that would create a right of action allowing private citizens to seek injunctive relief, and statutory damages of at least $10,000 per violation plus costs and attorney’s fees against anyone who manufactures, distributes, or sells an assault weapon or ghost gun kit or parts in the State of California.”
James told The View: “When I heard about that, I said to my team, ‘We need to follow his lead.’”
The gun control plan capitalizes off of the Supreme Court’s provision that abortion providers have the right to challenge the Texas law in federal court. The reach of the opinion, however, depends on another case the Supreme Court will be deciding in the next few months about whether a Mississippi law banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy should be upheld. He cited a post pointing out that the court “appeared poised to uphold the state law, which bans abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.”
An important aspect of the debate is who these decisions could potentially affect. Ushma Upadhyay, a University of California at San Francisco professor with the university’s Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health program, told the Times in so many words that it could affect all people who become pregnant.
“There isn’t one monolith demographic who get abortions,” Upadhyay said. “The same people who become pregnant and give birth are the same people who have abortions at different points in their lives.”
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