Home Local Gov. J.B. Pritzker calls special legislative session on reproductive rights in light of Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade

Gov. J.B. Pritzker calls special legislative session on reproductive rights in light of Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade

by staff

Illinois politicians reacted swiftly to Friday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, with Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Democratic legislative leaders immediately announcing they plan to call a special legislative session to strengthen the state’s already-stringent protections for reproductive rights

“In Illinois, we trust women,” Pritzker said in a statement. “Despite the action of the Supreme Court today overturning Roe v. Wade, the right to safe, accessible reproductive health care is in full force in Illinois — and will remain so.”


In a separate statement issued through Pritzker’s reelection campaign, the governor made clear he will use the Supreme Court decision against his Republican opponents.

“Radical Republicans, including every GOP candidate for governor, want to dismantle the freedom to choose and take our state back to the dark ages. Their extreme policies would undo decades of progress and pose a clear threat to our most fundamental rights,” Pritzker said.


The ruling comes just four days before Tuesday’s Republican primary.

Democratic U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin issued a statement saying “millions of Americans are waking up in a country where they have fewer rights than their parents and grandparents,” because of Friday’s decision.

“The bottom line: on critical, personal choices involving a woman’s right to make reproductive decisions about her own body, do you trust her or the government?  The Supreme Court now says a woman’s right to privacy does not extend to the most personal, private choice she will ever face”

Durbin chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, which he said “will explore the grim reality of a post-Roe America in a hearing next month.”

U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth, a Democrat who’s up for reelection this year, said she was “outraged and horrified” by the Supreme Court decision.

“This outcome is a nightmare that robs women of their right to make their own choices about their healthcare and their bodies, and it paves the way for a nationwide abortion ban that Republicans have been seeking for decades,” Duckworth said in a statement.

“In a nation with a growing maternal mortality crisis and often inaccessible healthcare, without affordable child care or universal paid leave, forcing births on anyone—even when the mother’s life could be at risk—is not only cruel, it will also be deadly,” Duckworth said.

Illinois lawmakers in recent years have acted to protect abortion rights and make the procedure more accessible.


In December, Pritkzer signed a measure to repeal a requirement that abortion providers notify the parents of minors seeking the procedure. In 2019, Pritzker signed into law legislation that established the “fundamental right” of women to have an abortion, and stated that a “fertilized egg, embryo or fetus does not have independent rights.”

In signing the 2019 bill, Pritzker said it is a preventive measure that “ensures that women’s rights do not hinge on the fate of Roe v. Wade, or the whims of an increasingly conservative Supreme Court in Washington.”



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