Cleveland, OH – The following press statement is issued jointly by the 13 organizations that make up the State Abortion Access Network — Avow, Cobalt, Pro-Choice Connecticut, Pro-Choice Maryland, Pro-Choice Minnesota, Pro-Choice Missouri, Pro-Choice North Carolina, Pro-Choice Ohio, Pro-Choice Oregon, Pro-Choice Virginia, Pro-Choice Washington, Pro-Choice Wyoming, and Reproductive Equity Now:
President Joe Biden has nominated Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the U.S. Supreme Court. With a decade on the bench, Judge Jackson is eminently qualified for this position. Judge Jackson currently serves on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and her career includes graduating from Harvard with high honors, working as a public defender, serving eight years as a federal judge, and a clerkship with Justice Stephen Breyer whom she will be replacing. The nomination of the first Black woman to the Court is a historic and long overdue step towards our highest court reflecting the people it serves.
Kia Guarino, Executive Director, Pro-Choice Washington: “Everyone deserves affordable, unbiased, quality, and comprehensive abortion and reproductive care regardless of age, race, zip code, income, gender, or immigration status. Our nations’ courts cannot uphold the standards of health equity for everyone without true representation. The nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is historic and long overdue, and we are heartened by this movement toward a stronger justice system.”
Aimee Arrambide, Executive Director, Avow: “Anti-abortion politicians have been using Texas as a policy testing ground for the rest of the country, and our state desperately needs a restored judiciary that will put a stop to the ongoing assault to personal freedoms. The nomination of Judge Jackson as the first Black woman named to the high court is important in the larger fight for justice and equity across the nation. Avow calls for a swift confirmation of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson.”
Karen Middleton, President, Cobalt: “Last month may have been the last anniversary of Roe v. Wade. Without new judicial nominees who represent real Americans, our nation simply cannot count on the federal courts to protect our Constitutional right to abortion in Colorado. Roe has always been a floor, not a ceiling. In order for abortion to not only be legal but also accessible for anyone who wants it, without stigma, cost barriers, or political interference, the courts must be restored. Cobalt supports the historic nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson.”
Mallory Schwarz, Executive Director Pro-Choice Missouri: “For 53 years, Pro-Choice Missouri has been the on-the-ground force protecting and expanding access to abortion for everybody. We know the majority of Missourians support access to abortion without political interference, and it’s time we have a Supreme Court that reflects the people. Trump appointees have brought the worst threat to reproductive freedom our country has ever seen, and the nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is a historic step to move our country forward.”
Kellie Copeland, Executive Director, Pro-Choice Ohio: “The selection of Judge Jackson is important, both because of the knowledge and experience she brings to the High Court, but also the ground-breaking representation in having the first Black woman to become a Supreme Court Justice. We are grateful to President Biden for nominating a judge of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s caliber to the Court. We are also aware of the racist and sexist motivations of those who will attempt to smear her. These detractors make it clear how important her ascension truly is.”
Tarina Keene, Executive Director, Pro-Choice Virginia: “We need fair-minded judges who will prioritize equal justice and an empathetic, humane justice system — that is how we protect and advance civil rights, health care access, including abortion access, and our freedom to vote. We must build a judiciary committed to equal justice and increase public trust in our courts by confirming judges from all walks of life, ensuring the life experiences of all Americans are reflected on the federal bench. Pro-Choice Virginia applauds the nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson.”
Rebecca Hart Holder, Executive Director, Reproductive Equity Now: “No matter what happens at the high court, abortion will remain legal in Massachusetts. But that doesn’t guarantee abortion care will remain accessible. Clinicians are already seeing patients travel from Texas to Massachusetts to access the time-sensitive abortion care they need and deserve. If the Supreme Court overturns Roe, advocates predict that 26 states will move quickly to ban abortion. We are heartened by the nomination of Judge Jackson to the Court and look forward to a swift confirmation process that includes appropriate questions for Judge Jackson regarding every American’s right to access abortion safely and legally in their community.”
This network of state abortion advocacy organizations were former affiliates of NARAL Pro-Choice America. They are state experts in fighting against anti-choice legislation and fighting for the expansion of reproductive freedom. They have secured historic wins including over-the-counter emergency contraceptives on college campuses, contraceptive equity legislation, codifying Roe v. Wade into state law, clinic escort legislation, reproductive non-discrimination laws, laws requiring transparency with crisis pregnancy centers, repeal of parental consent laws, and more. We are each advocating in our own states, with on-the-ground expertise, to ensure everyone has access to safe abortion care in their own communities.