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Gavin Newsom targets Republican abortion policies with plan to help Arizonans, ads in Alabama

Mathew Miranda, The Sacramento Bee on

Published in Political News

Gov. Gavin Newsom plans to make it easier for Arizonans to receive abortions in California, an announcement he made on the same day he debuted a new political advertisement that draws attention to Republican policies in Alabama.

Newsom’s latest efforts continue his attempts to denounce conservative campaigns trying to hinder reproductive rights and showcase California as the national haven for abortion services. His announcement to help Arizonans comes in direct response to that state’s Supreme Court decision recently to uphold a 160-year-old abortion ban.

The ban would only allow abortions deemed medically necessary to save the life of a pregnant patient. It has not yet taken effect.

“Arizona AG (Attorney General) Kris Mayes identified a need to expedite the ability for Arizona abortion providers to continue to provide care to Arizonans as a way to support patients in their state seeking abortion care in California,” Newsom spokesperson Brandon Richards wrote in an email statement. “We are responding to this call and will have more details to share in the coming days.”

The governor’s office said it is working closely with the California Legislative Women’s Caucus, but did not share more information on the specifics of the legislation or how quickly he expects it to be introduced.

“We need to start focusing on making the kind of progress that’s needed..to provide access to women and girls that are fleeing the state of Arizona,” Newsom said in an interview with MSNBC’s Jen Psaki that was broadcast on Sunday.

The interview debuted Newsom’s new political advertisement, in which two young women drive toward the Alabama state line and are stopped by a police officer who asks the driver to take a pregnancy test.

 

“Not enough attention has been placed on the fact that we’re not just criminalizing women’s access to reproductive care in certain states, now we’re criminalizing their travel,” Newsom told Psaki.

The ad campaign will begin Monday in Alabama, which has one of the nation’s strictest abortion bans. The state outlaws the procedure at all pregnancy stages, with no exceptions for rape and incest.

These advertisements also mirror previous attempts by Newsom to harness the issue of abortion access.

Nearly two years ago, Newsom’s re-election campaign paid for billboards in Texas, Indiana, Mississippi, Ohio, South Carolina, South Dakota and Oklahoma to promote California’s new abortion access website, abortion.ca.gov. The website provides resources for people seeking abortions to help them understand the procedure, find providers and receive financial assistance.

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