For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 26, 2021
Washington, DC — Today marks one year since Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) voted to confirm anti-choice, anti-freedom ideologue Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court. Today’s anniversary comes at a critical moment in the fight for reproductive freedom.
Sen. Johnson’s vote for Amy Coney Barrett helped cement a Supreme Court supermajority hostile to reproductive freedom that will soon have an opportunity to dismantle the constitutional right to abortion. As the Supreme Court prepares to hear oral arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization—a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade—all eyes are on the senators who voted to confirm Trump’s anti-choice Supreme Court justices.
NARAL Pro-Choice America Acting President Adrienne Kimmell released the following statement:
“By voting to confirm Amy Coney Barrett—a justice openly hostile to reproductive freedom—to the Supreme Court, Sen. Ron Johnson put our right to abortion care at risk like never before. With access to abortion under unprecedented threat, it’s time to demand accountability from politicians like Sen. Johnson, who put politics ahead of our freedom. On Election Day, voters won’t forget who jeopardized their freedom to make their own decisions about their families and their futures.”
In September, the anti-choice supermajority that Barrett’s confirmation cemented on the Court allowed Texas’ vigilante-enforced ban on abortion (SB 8), to go into effect. By refusing to block this ban, a majority of the justices, including Justice Barrett, allowed Texas to render Roe essentially meaningless in the state. Last Friday, the Court announced that it will hear oral arguments in two cases regarding Texas’ ban on abortion on November 1, allowing the draconian law to remain in place in the meantime.
Just a few weeks after those arguments, the Court will hear Jackson Women’s Health Organization on December 1—a case that directly challenges Roe and threatens the constitutional right to abortion. This summer, Sen. Johnson joined 227 other anti-choice members of Congress to sign an amicus brief in the Jackson Women’s Health Organization case calling on the Supreme Court to overturn Roe.
The threat to the future of Roe comes as anti-choice state lawmakers have already introduced, advanced, or passed more than 330 bills attacking abortion access in 2021. This year, 106 restrictions on abortion access have been enacted at the state level, making it the worst year for abortion rights since Roe was decided. Wisconsinites are already subject to severe restrictions on reproductive freedom, including mandatory biased counseling, a forced ultrasound, and barriers that push access to care out of reach for many such as restrictions on medication abortion care.
Barrett has a proven track record of opposing reproductive freedom. Barrett suggested that Roe is an “erroneous decision” and signed onto an ad calling the landmark ruling “barbaric.” Another anti-choice ad Barrett signed onto called “for the unborn to be protected in law.” During her confirmation process, Barrett flat out refused to answer questions about whether states could make seeking abortion care a felony if Roe is overturned or punish people seeking abortion care with the death penalty. She also refused to answer whether states could prosecute people for using contraception if Roe is overturned. Barrett has aligned with the most extreme elements of the anti-choice movement, sided with states trying to restrict abortion access, and joined anti-choice groups in voicing opposition to the Affordable Care Act’s birth control benefit. She’s even connected to a group that calls for criminalizing abortion providers and common aspects of in vitro fertilization.
NARAL Pro-Choice America and its 2.5 million members are actively fighting back, running a national electoral program designed to reach, persuade, and mobilize key voters to hold Sen. Johnson and other politicians accountable for their unyielding attacks on reproductive freedom.
For over 50 years, NARAL Pro-Choice America has fought to protect and advance reproductive freedom at the federal and state levels—including access to abortion care, birth control, paid family leave, and protections from pregnancy discrimination—for every body. NARAL is powered by its more than 2.5 million members from every state and congressional district in the country, representing the 8 in 10 Americans who support legal abortion.