The White House is jumping into state-level battles for women’s reproductive rights. The Biden administration is assisting states by lending legal and messaging advice to those trying to protect reproductive rights in states pushing to restrict them.
It comes as the Biden administration seeks to make abortion access a rallying cry in next year’s presidential election.
By leaning on key local lawmakers and backing legislation to expand abortion rights, the White House is hoping to expand on the relative success that Democrats earned in the midterm elections by making abortion a large part of their campaign.
The effort is being spearheaded by the White House’s Gender Policy Council, alongside an inter-governmental affairs team and Vice President Kamala Harris’s office.
The groups regularly hold strategy meetings with local elected officials, activists, and reproductive rights groups.
The fights in states are being divided into three broad categories and have established an approach for each.
The White House sees three different approaches to defend abortion rights and has broken down states into what they call either “battleground,” “extremist” or “proactive” states.
The White House views “extremist states” as those that have already banned abortion and where there are plans for further restrictions such as Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and Idaho.
Since Supreme Court repealed the Roe v. Wade ruling last summer, ending the nationwide right to abortion, many Republican-controlled states are pushing to further restrict abortion access, while states run by Democrats are enshrining protections in new laws.
Republicans have largely shrugged off White House efforts at beating back efforts to limit abortion rights.
The Republican National Committee (RNC) has urged affiliated lawmakers and campaigns to go on the offense of abortion.
Meanwhile, in January the RNC passed a resolution directing national and state lawmakers “to pass the strongest pro-life legislation possible” ahead of the 2024 election cycle, citing six-week abortion bans as an example.