Mar 17, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Inslee signs law barring lawsuits against those seeking abortion

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee. Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) on Thursday signed a new bill prohibiting legal action against people seeking an abortion or anyone who aids them, the Associated Press reported.

Why it matters: The bill bars abortion bans like the one in Texas, which allows citizens to receive as much as $10,000 for successfully suing a medical provider or person who aids someone seeking an abortion.

What they’re saying: Inslee, a Democrat, said the measure “is necessary because this is a perilous time for the ability of people to have the freedom of choice that they have enjoyed for decades," per AP.

  • The Supreme Court is currently deciding a case on an abortion ban in Mississippi, which could eventually lead to the overturning of Roe v. Wade.
  • Abortion would immediately become illegal in at least 12 states if the Supreme Court were to overturn Roe v. Wade, and at least 15 states and Washington, D.C., have enacted laws that would automatically keep abortion legal in that scenario, per Axios' Oriana Gonzalez.

What we're watching: Washington’s law takes effect in June. California, New York, New Jersey and Connecticut have proposed similar laws to protect people seeking an abortion from lawsuits.

Go deeper: What abortion access would look like if Roe v. Wade is overturned

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