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Hobbs, Democrats announce plan to codify protections for birth control

By Lauren Gilger, Kirsten Dorman
Published: Thursday, June 22, 2023 - 11:10am
Updated: Thursday, June 22, 2023 - 6:28pm

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Gov. Katie Hobbs
Kirsten Dorman/KJZZ
Gov. Katie Hobbs speaks to the media on June 22, 2023, about the Arizona Right to Contraception Act.

Gov. Katie Hobbs is joining Democrats in Phoenix and Tucson on Thursday to announce a measure they plan to introduce in the Arizona Legislature next year.

It’s called the Arizona Right to Contraception Act. There’s concern in the wake of last year’s Dobbs ruling, which overturned Roe v. Wade, that states could try to block access to birth control, as well.

State Rep. Athena Salman, a Tempe Democrat, will sponsor the bill in next year’s session, and she joined The Show to talk more about it.

Saturday marks the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade. And the political fight continues across the country, and in Arizona.

“We believe we should not wait for action in D.C.,” Salman said. “We can protect the right to contraception in Arizona now. And we’re committed to boldly pushing forward so that every Arizonan has the peace of mind that access to birth control will be protected.”

Arizona state Rep. Athena Salman
Kirsten Dorman/KJZZ
Arizona state Rep. Athena Salman.

Hobbs, who said Republicans have attacked access to things like IUDs and the Plan B pill since Roe v. Wade fell, spoke in support of the bill.

“Legislators should know that any efforts to take away our reproductive rights will quickly meet with my veto pen,” Hobbs said.

Salman said she hasn’t yet had conversations with Republican colleagues, whose support would be needed in the GOP-controlled Legislature. But she hopes they will support the not-yet-drafted bill.

“If you are not in support of your constituents having a guaranteed right to birth control, then the public deserves to know,” Salman said.

The objective, Salman said, is to get the act signed into law, which she says aligns with the majority of public opinion.

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