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    On Roe Anniversary, A Year In The Abortion Fight

    Today is the 41st anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in Roe v Wade, the landmark case that recognized that a pregnant woman has a right to make her own decisions about whether to have a child or have an abortion. But looking back over the past year, it’s almost like we’ve traveled back in time to an era when a woman's ability to make personal decisions about her family was out of her hands. A look back at the greatest/worst “hits” over the past year.

    There was perhaps no place where the fight to keep private decision making between a woman and her doctor saw as many ups and downs as in Texas.

    In early June 2013 Gov. Rick Perry proposed a special legislative session in order to introduce a sweeping anti-abortion bill intended to block most Texas families from access to safe and legal abortion care.

    But then Wendy Davis led a 13 hour filibuster – The People’s Filibuster – to prevent passage of the abortion bills. And everyone was like:

    But like a reoccurring rash, Gov. Rick Perry called a SECOND special session of the Texas Legislature and the bill passed.

    That Fall, in a crucial victory for Texas women and families, a federal district court blocked the law.

    But we were devastated when the U.S. Supreme Court allowed the law to take effect anyway, forcing more than one third of the women's health centers in Texas to stop providing abortion.

    The Lone Star State wasn’t the only place where we saw the wins and losses in the ongoing War on Women.

    Evidence of abortion opponents “reasonable” arguments included, U.S. Representative Trent Franks (AZ) claim during a debate on a federal ban on abortions at 20 weeks of pregnancy, that “Women don't get pregnant that often from rape!"

    Over in Michigan, a pregnant woman, in the midst of miscarrying, was repeatedly turned away and denied appropriate medical care because of religious directives imposed on her local hospital.

    In North Carolina, a bill about motorcycle safety was amended to include a set of sweeping anti-abortion provisions. The bill passed.

    Illustrating that when the people have a chance to speak they routinely reject abortion restrictions, in November voters in Albuquerque, New Mexico stood up for women and families, turning out in force to defeat a proposed ban on abortion after 20 weeks.

    While we continued to hope that politicians take their cues from the people, many of them instead took their orders from extreme anti-abortion forces, practically letting anti-choice organizations write legislation for them.

    And the impact of these alliances is being felt nationwide. States including Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin to name a few passed abortion restrictions in 2013.

    In fact, a new study from the Guttmacher Institute reports that 22 states enacted 70 provisions aimed at curbing access to abortion, making 2013 second only to 2011 in the number of abortion restrictions enacted in a single year.

    Yes, 2013 was a rough year in the ongoing War on Women.

    But the fight isn’t over.

    Across the country, people came together to speak out against these abortion restrictions and in places where they could, voted to defeat them.

    Extreme anti-abortion politicians MUST think we are stupid if they think we want politicians playing doctor and interfering in our private decisions.

    Enough is enough. Stand with us and tell those who seek to undermine our personal decisions that these decisions rest with a woman, her doctor and her family. Learn more and fight back: