Democrats take aim at Florida after ‘scandalous’ and ‘extreme’ Supreme Court decision

Democrats take aim at Florida after ‘scandalous’ and ‘extreme’ Supreme Court decision
Democrats take aim at Florida after ‘scandalous’ and ‘extreme’ Supreme Court decision

“Extreme” and “scandalous”. For example, US President Joe Biden on Tuesday cited the Florida Supreme Court’s decision banning abortion in the state after six weeks of pregnancy. According to Biden, the law “endangers the health and lives of millions of women” as it denies them access to vital health care.

Abortion advocates in Florida suffered a major setback yesterday when the Supreme Court refused to strike down a new law from Governor Ron DeSantis. The law will come into effect in a month and ban abortion after six weeks of pregnancy. Today, abortion is illegal after 15 weeks in Florida.

At the same time, abortion advocates could also claim an important victory: the Supreme Court simultaneously decided that the question of whether the right to abortion can be written into the local constitution will be submitted to the voters. The issue will be on the electoral ballot on November 5, together with the presidential elections.

Majority of 60 percent required

The fact that the residents of Florida can vote to enshrine the right to abortion in the constitution is the result of a petition that was signed by the necessary 900,000 people. The initiators want an amendment to the state constitution that would “limit state interference in abortion.” The Supreme Court on Monday rejected the objections of Republican authorities and approved the addition of the amendment to the electoral ballot. However, a majority of 60 percent is required for the amendment to take effect.

Abortion advocates protest at the Florida Supreme Court.Image AP

Incumbent President Joe Biden has made protecting the right to abortion a spearhead in his election campaign against his Republican predecessor Donald Trump. Many polls show that a clear majority of Americans support the right to abortion. By submitting the issue to voters together with the choice of a new president, Democrats hope to mobilize voters who would then vote for Biden at the same time.

Third largest state

There are plans to organize such a referendum in more than ten states, and Florida is now a very important state. Florida is the third largest state in the US after California and Texas, and is up for grabs with 30 of the 270 electoral votes. For the Democrats, the referendum offers opportunities to win back the state. Florida has long been seen as a battleground state, but according to voter research, it is relatively certainly in the Republican camp after two victories in a row for Donald Trump.

Also on Tuesday, Biden called on Americans, and the residents of Florida in particular, to “make their voices heard” in November. Biden says he stands with “the clear majority of Americans who support women’s right to make their own choices.”

Trump said earlier this year that he was proud of the role he played in overturning Roe v. Wade in 2022 by appointing conservative justices to the Supreme Court. That ruling has guaranteed the right to abortion for all American women since 1973. Now it’s up to states to decide what restrictions to impose, which has led to de facto bans on abortion in many conservative states.

The article is in Dutch

Tags: Democrats aim Florida scandalous extreme Supreme Court decision


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