Arizona repeals 1864 abortion ban, Gov. Hobbs vows to do away with ink

The state’s 1864 blanket abortion ban will become history after a landmark vote in the Arizona Senate. Gov. Katie Hobbs confirmed she was ready to quickly sign the repeal into law, calling it a victory to protect women’s rights to life and bodily autonomy. This outdated legislation, which once threatened to punish medical professionals and intrude on personal health care decisions, is being repealed through legislative efforts by Arizona Democratic lawmakers.

Governor Hobbs revealed the news in a statement to the public, asserting that the fight for reproductive health care is far from over and expressing her continued commitment to defending reproductive freedom. Reproductive rights will be put to the test this November on the ballot, and the governor aims to further ensure these rights through legislative action, including passing the Arizona Contraception Act and guaranteeing IVF treatment. Reflecting on the Senate’s decision, she praised House and Senate Democrats, according to a statement from the governor’s office.

The effort to repeal the outdated abortion ban is spearheaded by Sen. Ana Hernandez and Rep. Stephanie Starr-Hamilton, who have introduced bills in the Senate and House of Representatives, respectively. Senator Hernandez, who introduced Senate Bill 1734, didn’t mince words about the larger implications of this fight. She sees previous actions by Republican leadership as signs of deeper problems with their governance that have become apparent through the lens of the abortion rights fight.

There is a palpable sense of relief at this major move to repeal the draconian law. Rep. Stahl Hamilton, who sponsored House Bill 2677, stressed the importance of voting for Arizonans as their private medical decisions are about to be subject to invasive legal controls. She acknowledged that there are still challenges, including the still-in-place 15-week ban, that must be faced to ensure Arizona residents fully restore reproductive freedom. As she outlined in her speech after the historic vote, her views reflect a broad understanding that every victory in the field of human rights is just one step in a long and arduous journey.

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