Vice President Kamala Harris blasted a leaked draft that indicated that the Supreme Court had voted to overturn the landmark abortion rights decision Roe v. Wade, declaring that “women’s rights in America are under attack.”
Harris went on to encourage those in attendance to vote for pro-abortion rights Democrats to Congress while pushing back against the efforts to ban the procedure.
“Roe v. Wade, in its power, has protected a woman’s right, her right to make decisions about her own body for nearly half a century. If the court overturns Roe vs. Wade, it will be a direct assault on freedom, on the fundamental right of self-determination to which all Americans are entitled,” she said during the EMILY’s List national gala held Tuesday at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C.
EMILY’s List is a political organization dedicated to electing female pro-abortion rights lawmakers.
Speaking just 24 hours after the draft opinion leaked, Harris issued a call to action for voters to elect more pro-abortion rights Democrats to Congress and push back against efforts to restrict access to the procedure.
“How dare they. How dare they tell a woman what she can do and not do with her own body. How dare they. How dare they try to stop her from determining her own future. How dare they try to deny women their rights and their freedoms,” she said.
Harris is among the Democrats in Washington who have publicly blasted the leaked draft written by Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito regarding the 1973 ruling recognizing a woman’s right to an abortion as constitutionally protected.
“When the right to privacy is attacked, anyone in our country may face a future where the government can interfere with their personal decisions — Not just women. Anyone,” she said. “And it has never been more clear which party wants to expand our rights and which party wants to restrict them. It has never been more clear. It has never been more clear which party wants to lead us forward and which party wants to push us back.”
She said there are Republicans who want to not only repeal Roe vs. Wade but other decisions that recognize same-sex couples and other decisions to enshrine protections for privacy and personal freedoms, but that they will keep fighting.
“If you stand for freedom, for self-determination for the right to privacy, if you stand for these principles, stand with us, because, you see, women’s issues are America’s issues, and democracies, democracies cannot be strong if the rights of women are under attack,” she said. “So to all here I say, let us fight for our country and for the principles upon which it was founded, and let us fight with everything we’ve got.”
EMILY’s List, Planned Parenthood Action Fund and NARAL Pro-Choice America announced this week that they plan to collectively spend $150 million on the 2022 midterms, on races up and down the ballot. The states that the groups are targeting include Georgia, Nevada, Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, California, Kansas, and Wisconsin.
Jacqueline Ayers, the senior vice president of policy, organizing, and campaigns for Planned Parenthood for America, said that the leaked draft opinion shows that Republicans intend to “roll back the clock” on rights — extending far beyond just abortion.
“They’re going after everything. It’s not just abortion; it’s birth control access; it’s marriage equality. This is just really the beginning,” she said.