FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – On Friday morning, the Supreme Court overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade decision that guaranteed abortion rights in the United States.
The controversial ruling is generating reactions in the Central Valley.
“It was a gut punch, but we all knew this day was coming,” said Cheri Greven, a spokesperson for Planned Parenthood Mar Monte.
“We think this is a great day,” said John Gerardi, executive director of the nonprofit Right to Life of Central California. “The Supreme Court has acknowledged that no right to abort exists in the Constitution.”
Gerardi celebrates the decision because it gives the power back to the states.
“We were forced into a single national abortion policy,” he said.
Thirteen states have abortion trigger laws expected to go into effect soon. California is not one of them.
“Abortion care is legal in California,” said Greven.
Planned Parenthood said it is expecting a 3,000% increase in out-of-state patients, adding that it’s been preparing for this since President Trump was elected and there is the capacity to take in an additional 250-500 patients each week.
“Planned Parenthood Mar Monte has built new health centers, renovated current facilities to be larger with more exam rooms, we’ve purchased land to build more health centers,” said Greven.
“We are nervous about the state of California and the pro-abortion steps that Governor Newsom and the legislation want to take to actually make the taxpayers of California pay for people in other states to come get abortions,” said Gerardi.
He said his nonprofit offers alternative resources to women facing challenging pregnancies.
“We have here in Fresno a pro-life nonprofit prenatal clinic that serves low-income women,” Gerardi said.
From a legal point of view, a local federal judge discusses the basis for this ruling.
“There is no federal law in the Constitution of the United States that authorizes and protects abortion,” said district judge Oliver Wanger.
Wanger said this doesn’t mean the ruling is set in stone, and there are a couple of ways the Roe v. Wade overturn could be challenged.
“One is for congress to do that. The other is for the United States to do it with what would be the equivalent of an election. That is very, very hard, it takes millions of people. It’s almost never been done in the last 40-50 years,” he said, adding that it’s also possible a group of states will file a motion to challenge the Supreme Court.