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Choice Is Healthcare-- It Is Also Agency & Freedom... And The GOP Is Trying To Take Away All 3

Tomorrow is the big day in Wisconsin— voters are deciding, via a Supreme Court election whether abortions in that state will be banned or legal. No grey zones there— as clear as can be. Far right homophobic MAGAt Daniel Kelly wants to ban it— and has been exposed for running false ads in his sleazy campaign. Milwaukee County Judge Janet Protasiewicz wants to protect women’s Choice. Yesterday, Patrick Marley noted that the campaign is the most expensive judicial race in U.S. history (over $45 million spent) and has “turned into a caustic, ideological brawl that will determine whether liberals or conservatives control the branch of government that will soon decide the fate of the state’s abortion ban.”

In late February, Protasiewicz came in first in the non-partisan primary and the two Democrats outpolled the two Republicans:

  • Janet Protasiewicz (D)- 414,673 (46.3%)

  • Daniel Kelly (R)- 217,965 (24.3%)

  • Jennifer Dorow (R)- 196,159 (21.9%)

  • Everett Mitchell (D)- 66,768 (7.5%)

Conservatives have controlled the court for a decade and a half and in recent years have had the final say on important issues in a state that has a Democratic governor and a Republican-dominated legislature. If liberals gain a one-vote majority on the court, they are expected to redraw the state’s legislative districts, watering down Republicans’ strength in the statehouse.
…Although there is no public polling on the Wisconsin race, Democrats for weeks have sensed momentum, saying record turnout in the February primary bodes well for them. They have attributed interest in the race to abortion, redistricting and the possibility that the state Supreme Court could be called on to resolve disputes over the next presidential election.
“Even though the headlines have died down about the overturning of Roe v. Wade, for people in their own lives the fury and the fear has really not changed at all,” said Ben Wikler, the chairman of the state Democratic Party. “Once a voter hears about the stakes and the immediacy of its impacts on abortion in Wisconsin, voters commit to voting on the spot and start thinking about who else they can convince to cast a ballot.”
Whether the recent indictment of Trump will play a factor in the race is unclear. Trump endorsed Kelly in 2020 but has stayed out of this year’s race. At a stop near Madison on Saturday, Kelly didn’t mention the former president to several dozen supporters but expressed concerns about whether enough conservatives would vote in an election that often sees a turnout of less than 30 percent.
“I’m a little bit worried about what might happen,” he told the crowd. “Will we continue to care about our constitution and the liberties it protects enough to get our friends to come out and vote— our colleagues, our neighbors— or will we sleepwalk through April 4th?”
Conservatives hold a 4-3 majority on the court, but one of their members, Justice Patience Roggensack, is not seeking reelection. That opens the possibility that they could lose control of the court for the first time since 2008.
Abortion providers in Wisconsin shut down their clinics after the Dobbs decision was issued because an 1849 law bans abortions unless one is needed to save the life of the pregnant person. The Democratic governor and attorney general have sued over the ban, and a judge in Madison is now considering the challenge. The case is expected to make its way to the state Supreme Court in the next year or two.
Where the candidates stand is in little doubt.
“I can tell you with certainty that if I’m elected on April 4th, I’m sure that we will be looking— I am sure we will be looking— at that 1849 law,” Protasiewicz said at a campaign stop in March at a resort in Elkhart Lake in eastern Wisconsin.
To erase any doubt about her views, she added: “I believe in a woman’s right to choose.”
Protasiewicz defended such comments in an interview, saying voters deserve to know how candidates view the world. She said she hadn’t prejudged the abortion case and would rule based on the law.
“One of my personal values is that people should have a right to make a decision in regard to their reproductive health-care decisions and choices,” Protasiewicz said. “What I tell people is that’s my value. That’s my personal opinion.”
Kelly has said his opinions would not guide how he rules on cases, but his stances are easy for voters to discern. He has been endorsed by antiabortion groups, done legal work for Wisconsin Right to Life and argued in a 2012 blog post that abortions take away lives but are supported by Democrats because they want to “preserve sexual libertinism.”
…A November survey by Marquette University Law School found that 55 percent of Wisconsin voters opposed the Dobbs decision and that 84 percent believed there should be exceptions for rape and incest.

Yesterday, Madison’s Cap Times endorsed Protasiewicz, calling her “a jurist with the experience, integrity and temperament to help form a high-court majority that rejects the judicial activism of partisans who are in the pocket of special interests that would undermine those values in pursuit of a rigid ideological agenda.” Meanwhile, a MAGAt psychopath running in a State Senate seat special election, Dan Knodl, was already talking about impeaching Protasiewicz if she wins and he is elected to the Senate, giving the GOP a veto-proof super-majority.

New York Magazine’s current cover story is an essay by Rebecca Traister, Abortion Wins Elections, about how Choice is becoming the predominant issue for Democrats this cycle, not just in Wisconsin, but nationally. She explained that how after the surprise Roe v Wade decision in 1973, “Republicans worked every anti-abortion angle, building spidery networks of local and state anti-abortion legislators, creating a judicial pipeline through the Federalist Society, and getting fat on the language of faith and family values. The right dreamed up ever more imaginative TRAP laws that shut down clinics based on building-code requirements related to hallway width. The GOP enforced waiting periods and circulated literature making fictionalized claims about links between cancer and abortion. Republicans used the House floor as a stage to vote again and again to defund Planned Parenthood— understanding that, even as they lost, they sent a dramatic public message to the very people most motivated to organize for them. When the Supreme Court… overturned Roe last year, it not only inflicted grievous harm but ensured that the job of protecting abortion rights and access must once again be undertaken legislatively. It’s different work than it was in 1972: Medication abortion, data-tracking technology, and hyperpolarization have all altered the terrain. But even if that were not the case, Democrats would have no useful road map for this moment, no muscle memory. Because, in fact, the party has simply not applied much legislative muscle to this task before.

But Dobbs also catalyzed a revolution in the politics of abortion. And now it’s not just some loud activists and marginalized lady pols telling Democrats to move quickly and assertively to figure out how to make abortion available again across the country: It’s voters. Voters who just saved the Democratic Party during a midterm year in which inflation and gas prices should have meant a drubbing for the incumbent president’s party but instead resulted in a historic success for Democrats, who retained control of all their state legislatures, flipped Republican chambers in Michigan and Pennsylvania, and, at the federal level, gained a Senate seat and kept House losses to the single digits.
Multiple factors, including a slate of ghoulish right-wing candidates, helped Democrats, but there is no question that abortion was the preeminent issue for voters. “Democrats should have gotten wiped out,” said the pollster Tom Bonier. “But they overperformed. When you look at where they overperformed, it’s in places where choice was most present in the election, either literally on the ballot, like Michigan and Kentucky, or effectively in terms of the perceived stakes and the extent to which the candidates were talking about abortion, like Pennsylvania.”
“I don’t think Democrats have fully processed that this country is now 10 to 15 percent more pro-choice than it was before Dobbs in state after state and national data,” said pollster Celinda Lake.
The Democrats, in other words, are the bewildered dog that has caught the bus. A motivated base has turned to them for leadership on abortion while they are staring down a Republican House majority, a Senate filibuster, and an obdurate Supreme Court. Upon hearing that I was writing about their party’s plan to tackle abortion post-Dobbs, more than one Democratic staffer, and at least one elected official, silently mouthed to me, “There is no plan.”
What Democrats have is incentive: One of their most urgent policy issues has just shown itself to be their most politically effective. And they are undergoing a generational turnover that has already started to reshape the party and its approach to the battle— a dawning, in the midst of cataclysm, of a new era of political possibility.
At the state level, the face of a new approach to abortion politics is indisputably Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer. “If you look at what happened across the country, there was no more profound outcome than in the state of Michigan,” Whitmer told me two days before her State of the State address in January. “We won all the constitutional offices; we flipped both chambers of our legislature for the first time in 40 years. It’s only happened four times in 130 years in the state.”
Democrats’ success was owed in large part to the presence on the ballot of Prop 3, a citizen-driven constitutional amendment that protected abortion rights in the state. Whitmer and her fellow Michigan Democrats were unique in that they had been running on abortion before Dobbs and continued to do so even when, in the months before the November elections, Democratic leaders and strategists cautioned them to ratchet it down a notch. Their gamble paid off: According to Bonier, the gender gap in Michigan in favor of Democrats was even higher than it had been in 2018, when it had hit a historic peak. And Whitmer— or “Big Gretch,” as she was appreciatively nicknamed by Detroit rapper Gmac Cash in 2020— was at the forefront of channeling that raw support into an agenda. “I was so associated with the issue I don’t know how you pull it apart” from other aspects of the platform, she said.
"The Long Reach Of The Law" by Nancy Ohanian
…What is happening in Michigan— an empowered Democratic-controlled government, a mechanism for changing the state constitution via direct referendum, a leadership class committed to adopting abortion rights as a central plank of its agenda— obviously cannot be replicated everywhere, which leaves millions of people in red states in particular without access to abortion care.
These elements are also notably missing in Washington, D.C., where the onus is on federal lawmakers to protect and expand abortion care in a terrifying post-Roe world. Democrats must remain on top of the onslaught of draconian restrictions in the wake of Dobbs, enforce every regulatory option through the executive branch, and give the appearance to voters of fighting fiercely while working in the minority in the House, against an insuperable filibuster in the Senate and in the shadow of a judiciary shaped by Trump. And they must do it all within the context of a federal party structure in which— unlike Michigan— the next generation is most assuredly not yet in charge.
It is chaos. Mayhem in the face of mayhem, all part of the anti-abortion right’s goal of confusing and stupefying the opposition. If Michigan felt like a different political planet, Washington offered bumpy reentry to the gravitational limitations of Earth.
Central to the tensions in Washington is the fact that Joe Biden, the president tasked with leading his party into this potentially era-defining battle, is a Catholic boy from Scranton, first sworn into the Senate weeks before Roe was decided in 1973, who spent the early decades of his career as an opponent of abortion rights. He was one of several Democratic senators who helped pass the Hyde Amendment, which has since the 1970s banned federal insurance programs from paying for abortion, making the procedure essentially inaccessible to poor women. Biden has worked mightily to evolve on the issue, becoming more solidly pro-choice than many could have imagined. Though he was caught flat-footed by Dobbs, he has since empowered people in his administration to make fighting back a full-time job. “The administration has shifted a lot,” said Deirdre Schifeling, political director at the ACLU, who has worked at Planned Parenthood and in the Biden administration. “It used to be hard to get a lot of focus on repro inside the administration, but after Dobbs, that’s really changed.” Jennifer Klein, co-chair of the White House’s Gender Policy Council, said there are people in the White House who are “waking up every day thinking about this.”
…Yet there remains a significant disconnect between a party that just won on this issue and a president who is constitutionally incapable of giving it the warm, expressive embrace the moment calls for, of showing voters that he understands the post-Dobbs landscape to be a legal perversion, a four-alarm public-health emergency, a chilling rollback of human rights, and even— in mercenary terms— a tremendously rich political opportunity. The pollster Tresa Undem found that Dobbs had the biggest impact on women of reproductive age (18 to 44), an integral part of the Democratic base. “Few policy events have such a profound personal impact,” she said, emphasizing that abortion is a visceral, energizing, potent electoral force. It thus carries a danger for Democrats: For young voters— some of whom went to the polls for the first time because of Dobbs— a perceived lack of commitment from the people they voted for “may demotivate them” for future elections, Undem said.
…The tension between a calcified leadership that remains ambivalent about making abortion access truly central to a Democratic rhetorical and policy framework, and frustrated politicians who see the fight for reproductive autonomy as both a moral and strategic linchpin, is evident in the White House’s relationship to Democrats in Congress.
…Especially now that it is clear the triumph of Dobbs did not break the stride of powerful factions on the anti-abortion right. In Kansas, which voted overwhelmingly to protect abortion rights last summer, a Republican lawmaker has suggested that individual cities might criminalize it. The Florida legislature is taking up a six-week abortion ban, a move that would cut off access to millions of patients in the American South. In South Carolina, some Republicans have sought to classify abortion as homicide. In response to threats from right-wing attorneys general, Walgreens announced it was preemptively deciding not to stock mifepristone in certain states, including some where abortion remains legal. Texas wants to rescind tax breaks for companies that pay for their employees’ abortion care, and one man’s lawsuit against his ex-wife’s friends for helping her get an abortion may create a model for criminal prosecution. In Nebraska, a teenager and her mother being criminally tried for getting abortion care are facing data evidence that was handed over by Facebook.
This omnidirectional storm invites some kind of unified response from congressional Democrats, but the caucus has not historically been capable of asserting itself on the issue. “Before Dobbs, we just hadn’t had all Democrats voting to protect abortion,” said Pramila Jayapal, head of the Progressive Caucus. “It has not been a clear winner to the party. Often when we raised abortion, it would be pitted in some way against economic issues.”
Between 1989 and 2007, Democrats had opportunities to pass versions of the Freedom of Choice Act, which would essentially have codified Roe. As a candidate, Barack Obama promised that his first act as president would be to sign the bill, but it could never garner enough support— even when he had a supermajority— to hit his desk. In 2009, Obama said pushing the legislation through was simply “not my highest legislative priority.” In 2013, California representative Judy Chu first introduced the Women’s Health Protection Act, a different attempt to legislatively enshrine abortion protections; it died in committee in four consecutive Congresses, passing the House only in the fall of 2021, just before oral arguments in Dobbs. In 2015, when Lee first introduced the EACH Act, which would have effectively overturned Hyde, it had 70 original co-sponsors; when she reintroduced it in January, there were 168.
“It helped a lot when we started diversifying our members of Congress and we got younger and more women of color in,” Jayapal said. “They are not yet in leadership, but this generation are movement organizers in a way that perhaps the current generation of power isn’t used to seeing.”
“These members aren’t going to put up with this old-school stuff,” Lee said, noting that Massachusetts representative Ayanna Pressley and New York representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez were among those who pushed the Rules Committee to remove Hyde from the appropriations bill, where it had long been a legislative rider, to enable members to vote against it. Pressley told me that at the House Democratic Issues Conference in March, she hosted a session dedicated to abortion rights and access, scheduled at 8 a.m. at the end of what she called “a brutal week.” The session had some of “the most robust attendance” of any at the conference, she said. “And people were engaged. They understood that not only are these policies a matter of life and death but that, also, they are popular.”
The unpopularity of abortion restrictions, especially the attacks on medication abortion, has dramatically changed the politics on the issue. Celinda Lake has recently done polling on how the anti-abortion right’s recent attacks are going over. “The biggest surprise,” she said, “was that it didn’t matter if you were in a legal or an illegal or a hostile state; it didn’t matter if you were a Democrat or a Republican or an independent. The unanimity of opposition to restriction of access to medication abortion was stunning and almost equal across all states. You would have thought it would have differed a lot between California and Mississippi, but it didn’t.” Polling like Lake’s, Schifeling argued, “opens up a whole world of support that we can leverage to change the conversation and put the extremist lawmakers, with their ever more extreme backdoor bans, on the back foot.” On some level, Republicans understand this. It’s why Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s majority has not yet passed a federal abortion ban out of the House. But Republicans are facing their own quandary: They must find a way to satisfy a ravening anti-abortion base.
The political opportunity is so great, and the polling so clear, that a few Democrats I spoke with see a path to legalization through Congress — not generations down the line but in a second Biden term.
“We need a clean bill to meet the moment, a right to abortion and birth control. We need to get rid of Comstock once and for all,” one person who has worked with the administration told me. “Then Democrats need to win back a trifecta; they should be able to win back the House in a presidential cycle, hold the Senate, reelect the president, then pass a right to abortion and contraception in 2025. I am so sick of people talking about a 30-year plan for abortion. I want to have a two-year plan for abortion.”
Is such a scenario possible? Even if reclaiming the House in a presidential-election year is doable— there are seats ripe for picking in blue states like New York and California— Senate Democrats face what political scientists and poll nerds call an “unfavorable” electoral map in 2024, defending far more seats than they can reasonably expect to pick up. It is possible that the map is so rigid, and polarization so entrenched, that Democrats can never get to the right number of votes. But the past two midterm contests have broken or exceeded historical assumptions. Abortion may not be just a winning issue but a model-exploding one. “We won big-time on abortion,” Lee said. “And let me tell you, before the election, there was a lot of sentiment: ‘Don’t talk about abortion. Don’t make it central to the agenda.’ But afterward, everyone was like, ‘Thank you very much.’”
This strategy means acknowledging the popularity of a fight for abortion access and the unpopularity of the right’s extreme incursions into pharmacies and mailboxes. It means replacing stalwart supporters of the filibuster like Kyrsten Sinema and electing enough Democrats to disempower Joe Manchin, a red-state Democrat the party has relied on as much as it has reviled. With every Senate seat gained in 2024, 2026, and beyond, “we’re one step closer to being able to get rid of the filibuster, which is when the key turns in the lock,” Warren told me.
Adjacent to the filibuster is Court reform. And though few would say so on the record, some policy-makers cannot discuss abortion protections without looking toward an inevitable conflict. They say there’s no working around judicial roadblocks, only ramming straight into them. Would an abortion law “tee up a challenge from the Supreme Court?” said the person who has worked with the administration. “Yes, there will likely be an inflection point in terms of the legitimacy of the Supreme Court.” While the administration is a very long way from talking about anything like Court reform, Harris was willing to go after the Court itself. “My role models are Thurgood Marshall, Charles Hamilton Houston, Constance Baker Motley,” she told me, “who all understood the responsibility of the highest court in our land to ensure fundamental freedoms. The Supreme Court took a right that had been recognized from the people of America; it was so foundational and fundamental.”
Perhaps it is time for Democrats to begin to use the theater of Congress as aggressively as Republicans have done. “When the Supreme Court forces women to have pregnancies that in some cases are dooming them to potential death?” asked Representative Jimmy Gomez of California, founder of the new Congressional Dads Caucus. “That should piss people off. Sometimes I don’t feel that outrage.” Another person who has worked at a senior level in both federal electoral and advocacy capacities wondered, “Why aren’t they reintroducing WHPA every damn week? I realize they’re not in the majority, but do it as a caucus vote! Make something up!” There was a plan to kick off Women’s History Month by reintroducing the WHPA in the House, but it was held up by procedural delays; according to a congressional source, it will happen before March is over. A version was reintroduced in the Senate on March 8. Meanwhile, Biden spent the month cementing his reelection bid’s focus on protecting Medicare, surely important and more comfortable terrain for him than abortion but definitely not the issue that won his party the midterms.
One lesson from Michigan is to make the connections between abortion and health care, child care, economic opportunity, affordable education, and democracy itself. When I described how Whitmer is linking abortion access to pre-K and featuring it as a centerpiece of a pro-business agenda, Warren got excited. “It just takes the fight straight up the middle,” she said.
And as Lake said, many Democratic leaders have still not grasped “what a strong frame this is in terms of freedom.” Tina Smith of Minnesota told me, “There was this weird idea that voters can only have one thing in their head at a time.” Campaigning in her state in the fall, she said, “I saw so clearly that voters understood the infringement on personal decision-making, connecting that with the other thing that these crazy radical Republicans are doing, which is trying to undermine the democracy. In the minds of the voters in Minnesota, it came together.”
“The challenge Democrats have had,” Bonier said, “is in drawing the charge of extremism to anyone but Trump. And what happened with Dobbs is that it not only had the impact as an issue by itself but it actually made voters look at arguments about Republican extremism and democracy denial and January 6 in a way that suddenly resonated for them.”
As more states attempt to put abortion measures on their ballots and Republicans do everything possible to keep this from happening, the connection between abortion and democracy could grow ever stronger. This year, lawmakers in Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Missouri, North Dakota, and Oklahoma have debated bills meant to undermine citizen-led ballot initiatives. Wisconsin Republicans rejected Democratic governor Tony Evers’s proposal that voters cast ballots on abortion in that state’s crucial April 4 election, which will determine control of the State Supreme Court. And in Ohio, where citizens are already collecting signatures for a constitutional ballot measure, some Republicans are pushing to make the electoral threshold for constitutional amendments 60 percent.
To truly reframe the issue moving forward might mean moving away from one old frame: Roe itself. Activists have long argued that it should never have been the ceiling but the floor. Now that it’s gone, those mourning its demise can strive to build a more expansive, less vulnerable model dependent not on legally precarious notions of privacy, and not tied to gestational age in a way that permits restriction, and not as exposed to limitations that hurt the poor most. Whatever comes next, multiple Democrats suggested to me, should not be modeled on Roe or try to recapitulate it. “We have a chance to imagine something much more fundamental to women’s futures and rights than we’ve ever had before,” Jayapal said.

This year, candidates are running for state legislative seats and municipal offices all over the country, in Virginia, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Chicago, St. Louis, Jacksonville and in Lincoln, Nebraska, and many are making their support for abortion rights— and often their opponent’s opposition— a cornerstone of their campaigns. Dr. Ron Lee is running for the Virginia House of Delegates in a swing district based in blue-leaning Hampton City (although the district also includes red hellholes in York County and Poquoson City). The incumbent, A.C. Cordoza is a garden variety anti-Choice Republican. Lee told us yesterday that “A woman’s right to chose is a human right; even Republicans have realized this after they overturned Roe v Wade. Virginia will turn blue on this issue alone.” He told me that he “will fight to enshrine a woman’s right to chose in the the Virginia Constitution.”

Jessica Anderson is also running for the Virginia House of Delegates and also taking on an anti-Choice Republican incumbent, Amanda Batten. The swing district includes part of James City County, all of Williamsburg and part of New Kent County. Northam (D) won the district in 2017 and Youngkin (R) won it in 2021. In between Tim Kaine won it in his 2018 Senate reelection campaign. Because of Batten’s solid anti-Choice record, she is very vulnerable to Anderson’s grassroots campaign. Last night, just back from a day of canvassing, Anderson told me that “Reproductive Freedom is so much more than just ‘pro-choice.’ The reality is any legislation that places a timeline on access to reproductive care is arbitrary and puts people’s health in jeopardy and can even result in death. As a candidate for Delegate in Virginia’s 71st District, this November, I know access to healthcare is on the ballot. The most recent Virginia general assembly introduced 5 abortion bans, with varying severity, none of which solved any actual concerns in Virginia, and all of which were killed in committees (thank goodness). When we legislate healthcare decisions, we force healthcare providers to hesitate and and put patients in harms way. It’s worth noting, my opponent is on board for doing just that. Her voting record speaks volumes; from voting NO on protecting contraceptives from future abortion language in legislation, to voting against coverage on abortion care or expanding who can perform abortions during 1st trimesters, i.e. prescribing Mifepristone (aka the abortion pill). This isn’t pro-life, it’s anti-choice and causes real life harm to Virginians. Access to healthcare isn’t a right or left issue, it’s a life or death issue and it will be on the ballot this election and every election moving forward until we codify it in our State Constitution or federally in Congress.”

Reporting for the NY Times yesterday, Reid Epstein wrote that the focus on abortion rights in down-ballot races reflects Democrats’ increased nationalization of local politics, in a way Republicans have for decades. “Doing so allows Democrats to avoid discussing crime rates or other less appealing campaign topics. But beyond that, they recognize and emphasize that in today’s tribal politics, the precise responsibilities of an office matter less than sending a strong signal to voters about one’s broader political loyalties… Past opposition to some abortion rights has become a political liability even for candidates who support them now. In Chicago, Paul Vallas, the former Chicago Public Schools chief executive who is running for mayor, is being attacked by his more liberal opponent, Brandon Johnson, for a 2009 television interview in which Vallas said, ‘Fundamentally, I oppose abortion.’”

Democrats are open in their belief at the current moment, the best way to win votes is to focus on the abortion fight.
“Abortion and reproductive rights is the No. 1 issue in 2023,” said Ben Wikler, the chairman of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, which has given hundreds of thousands of dollars to back [Eric] Genrich in Green Bay and Mayor Cory Mason in Racine, who is making similar arguments there. “It’s the No. 1 issue that moves voters that normally vote Republican to vote for someone else and it’s the No. 1 issue to get Democrats off the couch and casting ballots.”
In November, Racine asked voters on the midterm-election ballot if Wisconsin’s 1849 abortion ban should be repealed — and 71 percent said yes. Mason is now running television ads highlighting his stance in favor of abortion rights and attacking his opponent.
Abortion, Mason said, comes up in his discussions with voters as much as snow plowing, public safety and housing.
“These two big issues around freedom, the freedom to vote and the freedom to make your own health care decisions, they are every bit as front and center in this race as anything else that we deal with at the municipal level,” Mason said.
Mason’s opponent, Henry Perez, a Republican city alderman opposed to abortion rights, said voters in Racine did not care much about the issue. He said that he did not remember how he had voted in the November abortion referendum, and that too much fuss was being made over abortion being banned in Racine when it was available across the state line in Illinois, roughly 25 miles south of the city.
“A lot of people I’ve talked to say, ‘Henry, abortion, really?’” Perez said. “What do we care about it here? I mean, it’s not a thing that we do. And there’s always options like going out of town, you know, or going over to the next state to take care of an abortion if they need to.”

The only Blue America endorsed candidate in Texas, as least so far, is Pervez Agwan. He's running in a newly drawn district in the Houston Metro and is adamant about Choice. "The continued attacks on women’s bodily autonomy," he told me yesterday, "are unacceptable, and I will continue to work to codify abortion access into federal law. Reproductive justice is sorely lacking in society today, and it is absolutely maddening that Republicans keep trying to take us back in time when it comes to issues of women’s health and abortion rights. Her body, her choice. Period."

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