Michigan Gov. Whitmer Acts to Protect Those Seeking Abortion

May 25, 2022, 4:27 PM by  Allan Lengel

Gretchen Whitmer: "I am going to fight like hell."

In anticipation of the Supreme Court knocking down Roe v. Wade next month, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed an executive directive Wednesday instructing departments and agencies not to cooperate with other states or communities looking to prosecute women seeking legal abortion care in Michigan.

The directive also orders state goivernment branches to increase protections for reproductive healthcare and offer residents information about the cost and availability of care. 

If Roe v. Wade falls, a 1931 state law banning abortions would automatically go back into effect. She has filed a lawsuit to fight that law and make sure abortions remain legal in Michigan. The 1931 law bans abortion unless someone's life is in danger. It lacks an exception for rape or incest.

“Now is the time to use every tool in our toolbox to protect all aspects of reproductive health care," Whitmer said in a statement. "No matter what happens in D.C., I am going to fight like hell so every Michigander can make decisions about their own body. 

"However we personally feel about abortion, health, not politics, should drive important medical decisions. A woman must be able to make her own medical decisions with the advice of a healthcare professional she trusts. Politicians should not make that decision for her."

Attorney General Dana Nessel said in a statement: 

"I applaud Governor Whitmer for drawing a line in the sand and making clear no state of Michigan department or agency will aid in the persecution of women who would seek medical care in our state.  It is incumbent upon those of us who hold public office to exercise the full authority of our positions to extend support and protection for women in our state--and our country."

Abortion is a hot-button issue this election year, when the governor and attorney general each seek a second term.

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