US President Joe Biden on Wednesday signed another executive order to protect abortion rights, this time in regards to out of state travel for the procedure.
It’s the latest bid by the Biden administration to ensure access to abortions after the Supreme Court ruled in June to end the nationwide constitutional right to abortion.
What does the order do?
The order will allow states which have not banned abortion to apply for Medicaid funds. This money can then be used to support women who travel from out of state, and facilitate their access to an abortion.
The application of the order could be tricky, as Medicaid funds are not to be used for abortion services unless the woman’s life is in jeopardy or the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.
The order also urges healthcare providers to comply with federal non-discrimination laws in regards to medical care.
The latest executive order on abortion by Biden comes amid Republican-led efforts across the country to outlaw and restrict access to the procedure. The recent Supreme Court reversal on Roe v. Wade struck down the constitutional right to an abortion, leaving it up to the states to decide whether it should be legal.
Biden hails Kansas abortion vote
Biden on Wednesday also touted a major pro-choice victory in Kansas.
Kansans a day earlier voted against amending the state constitution to say there is no right to an abortion. The vote is unusual in a state that leans highly conservative.
“Last night in the American heartland, the people of Kansas sent an unmistakable message to the Republican extremists,” Biden said. “If it’s going to happen in Kansas, it’s going to happen in a whole lot of states.”
In other parts of the country, abortion rights are still under attack, however. In several weeks, the western state of Idaho will enact a near-total ban on abortion, with the Biden administration suing over the measure.
The Midwestern state of Indiana also recently advanced a near-total ban in the state Senate, with the legislation now headed for debate in the state’s House of Representatives this week.
wd/rs (Reuters, AP)
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