With Florida’s Republican super-majority and a governor chomping at the bit to secure conservative support before announcing his 2024 White House run, Grall’s proposed bill has all the assurance of passing.
DeSantis has said he supports “great life legislation,” saying in February: “We’re for pro-life. I urge the legislature to work, produce good stuff, and we will sign.”
In December, Democratic State Rep. Anna Eskamani told HuffPost that a 2024 ballot initiative to codify abortion rights in Florida was “definitely something that is being actively explored,” but admitted that finding the 60% threshold would be a challenge to reach.
The Florida Supreme Court would need to rule in favor of the bill before it could be enacted. In the past, the high court has upheld the right to abortion as a constitutional issue.
“Florida Republicans have once again demonstrated a complete disregard for the women of our state and for our collective freedoms,” Eskamani said in a statement Tuesday, adding that the ban is “extreme, dangerous, and will force millions of people out of state to seek care and others will be forced into pregnancy … No one wants Ron DeSantis in the exam room with us; personal medical decisions should be between me, my family, my doctor, and my faith — not politicians.”
Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Florida has the second highest rate of abortions annually after the District of Columbia. And abortion medication is the primary way people who can become pregnant terminate pregnancies.
Bending to pressure from Republicans and a lawsuit filed in November 2022 by anti-abortion zealots, Walgreens announced Friday that their stores would no longer distribute abortion medication in 20 states.
The suit targets the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) decades-long approval of the abortion medication mifepristone, the first in a set of two drugs used to terminate a pregnancy.
“We intend to be a certified pharmacy and will distribute Mifepristone only in those jurisdictions where it is legal and operationally feasible,” the company said in a statement.
Medication abortion is at the center of the reproductive justice battle. A federal judge in Texas is set to rule soon on the abortion medication.
According to The Hill, conservative Judge Matthew Kacsmar, appointed by former President Donald Trump, is expected to rule against the FDA’s drug approval. Kacsmar has a history of opposition to abortion.
Mifepristone, used in conjunction with misoprostol, is the most common medication abortion regimen in the U.S.
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