BURLINGTON, Vt., March 2 – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders issued the following statement today as the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the case Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, which would restrict women's access to abortions:
“The case under consideration today is rightly regarded as one of the most important women’s health care cases in a generation. Access to safe and legal abortion for millions of women hangs in the balance. If the Texas law is allowed to stand, abortion will officially become a right in name only, as it already is for millions of low-income women in this country.
“Nine hundred thousand women in Texas alone would have to travel more than 150 miles in order to exercise their constitutionally protected reproductive rights, if this law is upheld. It would also have an especially devastating impact on low-income women who do not have access to transportation or the ability to take time off from work to travel long distances to a clinic. A ruling to uphold the Texas law would have a domino effect, giving other state legislatures a green light to place a substantial burden on a woman’s right to an abortion.
“After all the progress we have made on women’s health, we cannot go back to the days when women in America did not have the right to control their own bodies. The Supreme Court must reaffirm that access to a safe and legal abortion is a woman’s constitutional right, a right which cannot be blocked by extreme, right-wing politicians.”