Today is NARAL Pro-Choice America’s annual “Blog for Choice Day” in honor of the 39th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade recognizing a woman’s constitutional right to have control over her body and reproductive life by being able to choose safe, legal abortion. NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia’s blog is honored today to share a special guest blog post by Congressman Jim Moran, who represents Virginia’s 8th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives and has long been a champion for women’s rights and health.
Guest post by Representative Jim Moran
Thirty-nine years ago today, the Supreme Court issued its 7-2 decision in the Roe v. Wade case stating that abortion is a fundamental right under the United States Constitution. Sadly, decades later we are still fighting everyday to preserve this fundamental women’s right.
No woman expects or plans for an unintended pregnancy. Those women for whom the unexpected happens are put in a terrible position; the consequences are steep, no matter what she decides. And this personal decision should not be made or interfered with by the federal, state, or local government.
Last year, 92 anti-abortion, anti-choice measures were passed into law across the United States, as well as seven anti-choice measures passed in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives. One such measure was Virginia’s new targeted regulation of abortion providers (or “TRAP”) law singling out abortion clinics to be treated as ambulatory surgery centers instead of doctor’s offices, as they have been classified. Clinics must now meet hospital-type standards on the size of rooms and widths of hallways, among other changes, possibly forcing closure of many clinics across the commonwealth. I was proud to join with women and men across the Commonwealth to stand against Governor McDonnell’s endorsement of these extreme regulations.
Under the landmark Affordable Care Act, women across the country with private insurance are eligible to receive birth control and other preventative services without paying anything out of pocket. Just this week, the Obama Administration announced women will be able to obtain these benefits beginning this summer. While we continue to fight a larger battle against individuals fighting against women’s health, this week’s news is welcome progress in the fight to expand access to basic health care for women.
Unfortunately, the efforts of anti-choice advocates both in state legislatures and within the halls of Congress will surely extend to the 2012 election year. This effort to eliminate access to women’s reproductive rights runs contrary to the intent of the Supreme Court’s constitutional ruling. I will continue to strongly advocate for abortion rights for women. This is an issue of great personal conscience that should be free of government interference. The Supreme Court has proclaimed its legality; the rest should be left to a woman, her family and her physician.
We thank Rep. Moran for sharing his thoughts with us today for Blog for Choice Day! Join in by following the posts on NARAL Pro-Choice America’s www.BlogforChoice.com and by sharing your own reflections about about reproductive freedom today. If you’re on Twitter, don’t forget to tag your tweets or links to your blog posts with #Blog4Choice or #Tweet4Choice.