White House calls Arizona ruling on abortion ‘catastrophic’

White House calls Arizona ruling on abortion ‘catastrophic’

  • “If this decision is upheld, health care providers will face prison terms of up to five years for doing their duty,” said Karine Jean-Pierre.

The White House has condemned “the potentially catastrophic, dangerous and unacceptable consequences” of a court ruling in Arizona that revived 19th-century legislation that almost totally bans abortion.

“If this decision is upheld, health care providers will face prison terms of up to five years for doing their duty; survivors of rape and incest will be forced to give birth to their attackers’ children and women with medical conditions will face serious health risks,” White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.

Pima County Judge in Arizona, Kellie Johnson, issued a ruling on September 23 that caused a stir in the United States, where access to voluntary termination of pregnancy – always a politically hot topic – is at the center of the campaign to legislative elections in November. The ruling came as part of a case seeking clarification after the US Supreme Court struck down abortion rights at the federal level in June, leaving the decision on the matter up to the states.

Arizona’s 1864 ban – which allows termination of pregnancy only when a woman’s life is in danger – had been blocked by court order since 1973, when the high court first upheld abortion rights in Roe v. . Wade. The judge considered that, after the June decision of the Supreme Court, the law in the matter should be returned to what it was before 1973.

The Pima County ruling was celebrated by Arizona Attorney General Mark Bernovich, a Republican. “We applaud the Court for upholding the will of the legislature and providing clarity and consistency on this important issue,” he said in a statement.

Johnson’s ruling came a day before the Arizona legislature’s ban on abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy went into effect, but Johnson’s decision sparked outrage from reproductive service providers. The ruling “has the practical and deplorable result of setting Arizona back almost 150 years,” Brittany Fonteno, president of Planned Parenthood Arizona, said in a statement. “No archaic law should dictate our reproductive freedom,” she added.

Several US states have implemented full or partial abortion bans following the Supreme Court decision. The Democratic Party, led by President Joe Biden, hopes to mobilize voters to defend access to abortion at the polls, during the mid-term elections on November 8, which will partially renew the Senate and completely renew the House of Representatives. Representatives.