U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement has become the main issue in state Senate, NY Daily News reported, adding that the Democrat Party will make use of the situation in order to emphasize the necessity to tighten abortion law in New York.
“Women’s rights are under attack,” state Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins stated. “Another Trump-appointed justice will guarantee an ultraconservative court that is even more hostile to women’s health care protections.”
In New York, Democrats have been pushing a bill known as the Reproductive Health Act that they say would make sure the provisions of Roe vs. Wade are codified in the state, which passed its abortion legalization law two years before the landmark 1973 Supreme Court ruling.
“We will be traveling the state letting everyone know how important this fight is for all New Yorkers,” Stewart-Cousins added.
Senate Republican spokeswoman Candice Giove responded by noting that the Dems failed to move the Reproductive Health Act in 2010 through a committee or on the floor for a vote when they controlled the chamber.
“Women have a right to choose under Roe vs. Wade and continue to have that right here in New York,” Giove said. “Instead of engaging those across the aisle, Sen. Stewart-Cousins continues to scare women and deceive them.”
She added that “as proposed, this legislation not only permits non-doctors to perform abortions, but it also lets domestic violence perpetrators face no consequences whatsoever by eliminating criminal penalties abusers could face for murdering or assaulting a pregnant woman.”
The Senate Republicans currently control the chamber with a bare minimum majority with the help of Senator Simcha Felder, a Brooklyn Democrat who caucuses with the GOP.
But the Republicans in the last few weeks of the recently concluded legislative session lacked the 32 votes to pass anything without Democratic support because one of their members left on active duty for the Navy.