The House Just Passed Two Bills to Protect Access to Abortion

But the legislation marks only the beginning of a long battle ahead.

Abortion rights demonstrators gather near the Washington Monument during a nationwide rally in support of abortion rights in Washington, D.C., on May 14, 2022. Yasin Ozturk/Getty

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Exactly three weeks after the Supreme Court voted to overturn Roe v. Wade, the House of Representatives passed two bills aimed at protecting the right to abortion in the United States. Neither of the bills advanced on Friday is likely to succeed in the Senate.

One of the bills, the Women’s Health Protection Act, passed 219 to 210 with one Texas Democrat, Rep. Henry Cuellar, voting with all House Republicans against the measure. The bill, which would legally grant medical professionals the ability to provide abortions to patients, passed in the House in September, but has been blocked in the Senate.

The other measure, the Ensuring Access to Abortion Act, passed 223 to 205, would allow residents to cross state lines to seek an abortion. Three Republican House members—Reps. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, and Fred Upton of Michigan—voted with Democrats in favor of the bill. 

Although both bills appear doomed in the split Senate, they come at a time that marks just the beginning of a long battle ahead for many pro-choice health care workers, lawyers, and activists in the US. For a full breakdown of the future of abortion, don’t miss our recent reporting package in partnership with Rewire News Group: “Where Do We Go From Here?

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