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Boxer Introduces Legislation to Guarantee a Woman's Right to Choose

Location: Washington, DC

Boxer Introduces Legislation to Guarantee a Woman's Right to Choose

U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) last night introduced legislation that would write the Supreme Court's landmark Roe v. Wade decision into federal law and guarantee reproductive freedom for women across America. Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) introduced companion legislation in the House.

Boxer said, "The Freedom of Choice Act says that we will not turn back the clock on the health and rights of women. And it says that we will take steps—as a Congress and as a country—to safeguard the dignity, privacy, and health of women now and for generations to come."

The Freedom of Choice Act would ensure that women have the fundamental right to bear a child. It would guarantee the right to choose before fetal viability or, if necessary to protect a woman's life or health, after viability.

According to a recent CNN poll, 66 percent of the American people said they do not want Roe overturned. Yet South Dakota recently enacted a ban on abortion in nearly all circumstances, even when the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest, or when a woman's health is at risk. Several other states are considering similar bans.

Prior to the Roe v. Wade decision, more than a million women a year were forced to seek illegal abortions and often risked infection, hemorrhage, disfiguration, and death. Some estimate that thousands of women died every year because of illegal abortions before Roe.

Boxer said, "For the past 33 years, Roe has preserved health and saved lives. It has enabled women to make their most personal and difficult reproductive decisions in consultation with loved ones and health care providers. And it has given them the dignity to plan their own families and the ability to participate fully in the economic and social life of our country."

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