While reproductive rights keep getting turned back in states like South Carolina and North Dakota, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is looking to move things in the opposite direction, introducing a bill that would decriminalize abortions after 24 weeks to protect a woman’s health. The shift would bring state law in line with federal regulations, while also putting Republicans in the state Senate in a tough spot: “More than half, or 51 percent, of Republicans favored abortion rights to 45 percent against in a March poll of registered voters by Loudonville-based Siena College,” Bloomberg reports. Needless to say, the local right is not pleased.
A spokesperson for Long Island State Senator Dean Skelos called the move an “unnecessary and purely political maneuver,” while Cuomo contended, “This is important because the Supreme Court could change in compositions, or opinion, and New York works to protect women’s right to choose.” As an added bonus for Cuomo, if the bill makes it to a vote, an anti-abortion stance by Republicans is a potential liability come election time, because this is New York.
The Catholic League sees things differently. “Andrew Cuomo’s lust for abortion rights has effectively killed his chances of ever becoming president of the United States,” said Bill Donohue in a statement. “Cuomo may not pay a big price in New York for his extremism, but once he ventures outside the Empire State he will find out — the way his father Mario did —just how out of touch he is with public sentiment on this life and death issue.” The governor appears willing to take that bet.