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What would happen in Colorado if Roe v. Wade was overturned?

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) - This week, the United States Supreme Court heard arguments in a Mississippi court case that could reshape abortion rights across the United States, and possibly overturn Roe v. Wade. That has many in Colorado wondering what would happen to abortion access in our state.

Supreme Court oral arguments wrapped up Wednesday with the 6-3 conservative majority openly discussing what would happen if they rolled back the landmark decision in Roe v. Wade, giving the ability to restrict or ban abortion to the states. That's causing Colorado lawmakers from both sides of the aisle to spring into action, but experts say not much would change in our state should the decades-old case be overturned.

"Colorado actually has some of the loosest abortion laws in the country," said Josh Dunn, Professor of Political Science at UCCS. "There are really no restrictions throughout the entire pregnancy. Really, the only restriction we have is that parents of minors have to be notified. We're one of only seven states, I believe, where there are no real restrictions. So with those laws on the books, they'll probably stay on the books.”

But this change of tone from the Supreme Court might energize pro-life groups to try and pass restrictions in the Colorado legislature, or put initiatives on the ballot.

Colorado Springs republican Congressman Doug Lamborn is already working on HR 6099. It's a bill that, if passed, would change the language used to describe pregnancy.

"It's 'Recognizing the Unborn Act,' and what it does is, it takes every time the word 'fetus' appears in the U.S. code and it replaces it with the phrase 'unborn child'," said Rep. Lamborn. "'Unborn child' is much more human. It's much more dignified. It shows the essential worth of the unborn person more than the word fetus does. So it's a powerful symbol that we recognize the dignity and the worth of the unborn."

Meanwhile, democrats like Congresswoman Meg Froelich, of Colorado's 3rd District, are working to solidify abortion rights in our state.

“We are very excited next session to bring the Reproductive Health Equity Act," said Rep. Froelich. "This is a piece of legislation that will ensure access to the full range of reproductive health care in Colorado, which includes abortion. While Colorado doesn't have restrictions, we fought off restrictions for many, many years, we also feel like now is the time to put protections in place."

Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains says even though Colorado’s access wouldn’t change, Roe v. Wade being overturned would put an immense strain on their clinics. A strain that they say already started when Texas Senate Bill 8, which restricts abortion, was passed in September.

"Now that Senate Bill 8 has passed in Texas as an example, our largest facility that's located over in the Park Hill area of Denver, saw like a 500 percent increase in Texas patients in the first few weeks after the law went into effect," said Vicki Cowart, President & CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains.

The influx of patients could lead to even longer delays in care for locals that make appointments at Planned Parenthood.

"Our health center staff get busier and busier," said Cowart. "We have been working to expand our capabilities for the last couple of years because we've been anticipating some of this. So, we are we can see more people today than we did two years ago. But nonetheless, it's filling our schedules and that means that if you're a Denver patient or Colorado Springs patient or a Durango patient, you might have to wait more than a week, might be a couple of weeks, before you can get in"

Planned Parenthood says they've been relying heavily on telehealth virtual appointments to serve patients quickly. Contraception, STI tests, and even abortion pills can be prescribed through a telemedicine appointment and mailed to a patient.

For now, things will stay the same across the country when it comes to Roe v. Wade. Even though the Supreme Court heard arguments on the Mississippi abortion case this week, we won’t have a decision from the justice until June or July.

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Mallory Anderson

Comments

21 Comments

  1. Remember when people used to be in control over their own bodies without someone else, especially their own government, interfering in their business? When will this country bet back on a track that is not leading to further civil discord?

    1. I think there will be a real revolution is Roe v. Wade is overturned and abortions are banned. And it will mean a return to “back-street” abortion clinics, because they will never actually stop them from happening.

      1. Ohh man, Ok I will let you know.
        If Roe vs Wade is overturned then what that means is it goes to States rights. Each state can decide what they want for laws and restrictions. It does not mean abortion will automatically be banned. Colorado Law will be the law and not federal laws/regulations.
        It does not mean back street clinics. If it gets banned there will be many states who will still allow it. It would also mean people would think twice about using protection or other birth control means. Some use abortion as a fallback with little regard to being proactive about there reproductive health .

        1. I understand. I was just addressing the worst possible outcome, which I still think could happen with this supreme court. Again, I hope you’re right.

    2. Why do some people think they should have a say over other people’s bodies? Let them worry about controlling their own bodies and not have abortions. That’s actually the way it is today. No one is forcing anyone else to do anything. But it’s people trying to enforce their specific religious-based beliefs on everyone else.

      1. Really….you just said that. This is one of those times you just contradicted yourself from past comments.

          1. I’m not going to dumb it down for you. If you can’t see it, you’ll never get it.

        1. I guess you can’t explain it because I’m not actually contradicting my past comments.

        1. People are trying to persuade you that it’s the right thing to do, because it is, whether you like it or not. There are some things that are beyond the understanding of average Americans, and we generally depend on experts to help us make good decisions. But since Trump politicized the whole Covid vaccine issue, this one thing has become a different situation and people no longer trust the experts, who are actually still the only experts regardless of whether everyone trusts them or not.

  2. You should be allowed to kill your children until they reach the age of 18 – right?

    1. An abortion doesn’t kill anyone. It destroys a bunch of cells which MAY have otherwise developed into a baby or not, if nature had taken its course.

      1. If you want to call a baby a bunch of cells so you can sleep at night, be my guest. Back here in reality, it’s a baby.

        1. You don’t know what those cells actually look like at the time of the average abortion. It’s not a matter of my sleeping at night, it’s just more facts, whether you like them or not.

          1. Using your logic, why is someone charged with 2 counts of murder if killing a pregnant woman if the baby is just cells?

          2. Because the Unborn Victims of Violence Act of 2004 is a Federal law which recognizes an embryo or fetus in utero as a legal victim, if they are injured or killed during the commission of certain crimes of violence. It was enacted for a very specific purpose, when the mother was killed and obviously had no say in what happens to her body. In the case of an abortion, the mother has made a choice about her own body.

  3. What will it do? It will save millions of baby’s that would have been murdered each year. Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge advocate of a person’s right to choose, but shouldn’t we ask the baby what their choice is? There are two people in this equation, but only one gets to make the choice.

    1. There are not two people until a baby is born. That’s another medical fact, whether you like it or not.

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