The governor of the US state of Illinois on Wednesday enacted a law establishing a “fundamental right” to abortion and removing old laws that criminalized the procedure.
The Illinois law was passed in response to a wave of bans and restrictions approved in other states, and Governor JB Pritzker hailed it as “a beacon of hope in the heart of this nation.”
The law repeals criminal penalties on abortion providers, codifying what had already been de facto law through court rulings.
The measure also requires private health insurance companies in the state to cover abortion procedures.
“We are building a firewall around Illinois to protect reproductive access for everyone,” state representative Kelly Cassidy, one of the law’s chief sponsors said.
Pritzker, a Democrat, said the added legal protections are necessary in the event that the US Supreme Court rules in the future to impose new abortion limits.
“Those opposed to women’s reproductive rights are emboldened,” the governor said, “And their hopeful eyes are on the highest court in the land.”
It comes as more conservative US states have enacted restrictions on abortion as part of a strategy to push the issue to the Supreme Court.
The top court upheld women’s right to abortion in its landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, but anti-abortion forces hope to overturn it now that the court’s conservative majority has been strengthened with the addition of two justices appointed by President Donald Trump.
Alabama approved a near complete abortion ban in May, and six other states have tightened abortion access in recent months, making the procedure illegal when fetal heartbeat is detected — usually around the six-week mark, when many women are not aware they are pregnant.
Pritzker said Illinois would be willing to accept “refugees from other states” where women might be denied abortion access.
In neighboring Missouri, for example, the fate of the last remaining abortion clinic is in the hands of a judge who is considering whether to allow it to continue operating.
How Trump’s limited intellectual development has given him a ‘God complex’
Trump's lack of respect for the country's long-standing democratic norms and institutions also extends to America's alliances, security arrangements with its allies and friends, and the international order more broadly. To that end Trump has threatened to remove the U.S. from NATO, hailed the merits of nationalism (while barely pretending that does not mean white nationalism), tried to surrender U.S. security to Russian President Vladimir Putin and proclaimed on numerous occasions that America will now stand (mostly) alone in the world.
This story first ran at Salon in November of 2018.
Danish media crushes ‘questionable real estate agent’ Trump for his ‘absurd’ snub of their country
President Donald Trump has found himself getting skewered by the Danish media after he abruptly canceled a planned meeting with the Danish prime minister after she refused to sell Greenland to the United States.
Copenhagen-based newspaper Berlingske on Wednesday published several articles and editorials that took Trump to task for snubbing an important European ally because it would not entertain selling him Greenland.
The paper's lead editorial, for example, declared Trump's cancellation "absurd" and said that he was deeply harming his country's relationship with Denmark.
Amid recession warnings, Trump reportedly considering more tax cuts for rich and corporations
"Two of Trump's ideas for stimulating the economy are 1) cutting the corporate tax rate a little more (after cutting it a lot didn't do much), and 2) indexing capital gains to inflation. It's tax cuts for the rich all the way down."
While continuing to publicly downplay warning signs that the U.S. economy is barreling toward a recession, the Trump White House is reportedly weighing a number of supposed stimulus measures, including more tax cuts for the rich and large corporations.