For Immediate Release: Friday, March 4, 2022
Washington, D.C. — Yesterday, anti-choice lawmakers in the Florida state Senate passed HB 5, an extreme and unconstitutional ban on abortion after 15 weeks. The bill, which is modeled after Mississippi’s 15-week ban currently being challenged at the U.S. Supreme Court, now heads to anti-choice, anti-freedom Governor Ron DeSantis’ (R) desk.
Following today’s vote, NARAL Pro-Choice America President Mini Timmaraju released the following statement:
“Extremist lawmakers in Florida and across the country are clamoring at the opportunity to pass bans similar to Mississippi’s 15-week ban because they know the anti-choice supermajority on the Supreme Court is poised to end the constitutional right to abortion as we know it. Even though anti-choice lawmakers are trying to cover up their extremism, we know these bans are no less sinister than any other ban on abortion. All attacks on reproductive freedom take away people’s fundamental freedom to make the best decisions for themselves and fly in the face of the values a majority of Americans and Floridians hold dear.”
Florida Republicans join a wave of anti-choice lawmakers across the country who are trying to conceal the extremism of 15-week abortion bans. But all bans on abortion that take away people’s freedom to make their own decisions about pregnancy and parenthood and impose one-size-fits-all restrictions are harmful. These bans—and the barrage of others being pushed by anti-choice state legislators—are all part of the anti-choice movement’s agenda to ultimately end legal abortion.
The fight for reproductive freedom faces a pivotal moment as the anti-choice supermajority on the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to hand down a decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization—a case regarding Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban that directly challenges Roe v. Wade. If Roe fell tomorrow, 28 states—including Florida and all three of its neighboring states—are likely to take action to prohibit abortion outright. Of those, 12 states already have “trigger bans” in place which would ban abortion automatically. These bans will disproportionately hurt those who already face barriers to accessing abortion care—including women; Black, Indigenous, and other people of color; those working to make ends meet; LGBTQ+ people; immigrants; young people; those living in rural communities; and people with disabilities.
The anti-choice movement’s agenda to halt social progress and gain power and control does not stop with undermining abortion rights. Anti-choice, anti-freedom legislators in Florida are attacking Floridan’s fundamental rights from all angles with bills like the “Stop WOKE Act” (HB 7) and “Don’t Say Gay or Trans Bill” (HB 1557) under consideration this session. Florida lawmakers are proving that they will stop at nothing to strip Floridians of their rights. These attacks are part of a coordinated effort by anti-choice extremists to roll back fundamental freedoms and maintain white patriarchal control.
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, pregnancy and post-partum care, and paid family leave—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.