Colorado Abortion Rights Bill Moves Forward After GOP-Led Filibuster Fails

On Saturday night, a bill enshrining abortion protections in Colorado was passed in the state’s Democratic-run House of Representatives after Republicans tried to block the legislation with a 23-hour filibuster.

It is believed that the filibuster in Colorado was the longest in Colorado for nearly 25 years. The Denver Post reported. Despite the fact it was obvious that the bill would pass, the procedural move was held.

Now, the bill moves to the state Senate where it is expected to pass. Gov. Jared Polis, a Democrat has expressed his support for the measure. He will likely sign it into law when it reaches him.

Democrats could have blocked the filibuster altogether, but didn’t do so due to bipartisan tradition in the chamber against such actions. Party leaders expressed a need to pass the law in order to protect people’s reproductive rights, even if it meant sitting through Republicans’ complaints about the bill for nearly an entire day.

“We will be here as long as we have to be here to continue to fight for the right for women to have a right to choose in the state of Colorado. We’re here to protect that right and we’re going to keep going as long as they make us go,” House Majority Leader Daneya Esgar (D) said.

Rep. Meg Froelich (D), sponsored the bill declares that access to abortion and contraception are fundamental rights for state residentsIt also prohibits local governments from imposing abortion bans at the local level.

Froelich had previously indicated that the bill needed to be passed in December following arguments at the federal Supreme Court. Conservative justices indicated a willingness for abortion protections to be upendedThey were also recognized in the landmark Roe v. Wade1973 was the year of the decision.

“We have to have in statute protections for access to the full range of reproductive care, including abortion,” Froelich said at the time.

Colorado already has some of the strongest abortion protections in the country. The state currently allows abortion at all stages. Women can access outpatient services at 26 weeks and 34 weeks respectively. People seeking abortion are not required to wait and are protected by another state law which prohibits protesters harassing people who visit clinics.

Many Coloradoans may still find it difficult to access an abortion. as 87 percent of counties in the state do not have a clinic.

Colorado voters are strongly in favor of reproductive rights. They elected pro-abortion leaders and rejected attempts to limit abortion access.

Last year, Polis signed into law a bill that makes Medicaid funds available for abortion services. Voters voted against a ballot measure in November 2020 that would have prohibited abortion after 22 weeks of gestation. nearly 6 in 10 residents indicating that they were opposed to such a move.