Vice President Kamala Harris said Monday that the White House is not currently exploring the possibility of opening abortion clinics on federal lands in states that ban abortion — a move that progressives began after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last week. proposed ideas.
“It’s not something we’re discussing right now,” Harris told CNN’s Dana Bash, who asked her if it was an option she and President Joe Biden were looking at.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Elizabeth Warren have been urging the White House in recent days to consider the possibility of federal land offers in red states, where several Millions lost nearby abortion care.
“I think one of the things we also know is that President Biden also has action that he can mobilize. I’m going to start with the easiest and easiest baby steps. Open abortion clinics now on federal soil in red states. Now, “Ocasio-Cortez said at a protest in New York City on Friday.
Warren made similar remarks at a rally in Boston that day, saying the White House and Congress should “explore the extent to which we can begin to use federal lands as a way to protect all those who need access to abortion services, and these states either Abortion has been banned, or is clearly on the verge of banning it.”
The federal government owns more than a quarter of the land in the United States, most of which is concentrated in the West. Utah was one of the first states to enact a “trigger ban” on abortion, and more than 60 percent of its land is owned by the federal government. Wyoming, Idaho and Arizona — three other states hostile to abortion rights — also have a high percentage of federally owned land.
But Harris said the Biden administration is focused on making sure people can still get abortions where clinics are still open, saying that “it’s important now” that we do everything possible to empower women not only to seek but to have access to care place for treatment”.
In states where abortion has been banned or is about to be banned, people in need of an abortion can only get the procedure if they can afford to travel out of state, which includes the cost of transportation, lodging, lost work and child care.
Bash asked Harris if the Biden administration is prepared to provide “financial resources, some form of travel voucher, child care services” for those who need such assistance. Harris acknowledged the need but made no firm commitments.
“We want to make sure there aren’t extreme disparities … based on who can receive care based on how much money they have,” she said.
The vice president also reiterated that the Biden administration opposes any state attempt to punish someone who helps a patient go to another state for an abortion, and she said the Justice Department will challenge those laws in court.