Democrats line up behind bill to codify Sisolak executive order protecting abortion rights

By: - February 10, 2023 2:53 pm

Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro introduced the legislation, and the entirety of the Democratic Assembly signed on as co-sponsors. (Photo: Richard Bednarski)

Nevada Democrats have introduced legislation to codify former Gov. Steve Sisolak’s executive order that protects out-of-state patients who receive abortion care in Nevada from being extradited after the fall of Roe v. Wade last year.

“This is a crucial step in continuing to shore up protections for abortion patients in Nevada,” Lindsey Harmon, the executive director of Planned Parenthood Votes Nevada, said in a release. “When the Supreme Court struck down federal protections for abortion rights last summer, it created an abortion access crisis in this country leaving millions of people to travel to states like Nevada.”

Abortion providers in Nevada, especially in  Las Vegas, are seeing an influx of patients from out of state. About half of the patients seeking abortion services from the Planned Parenthood clinics in Nevada are from out of state, according to a statement from Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains.

During last year’s campaign, Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo characterized Sisolak’s executive order as “nothing more than political theater” and signaled an intention to repeal it. He later changed his position.

Throughout much of last year’s campaign, a recurring refrain from Sisolak and Democrats was that Lombardo was taking conflicting positions on abortion rights.

Nevada Democratic Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro introduced the legislation, which would protect those seeking services out of state, the licenses of reproductive health care providers in the state, explore licensing reciprocity for abortion providers, prohibit the state from extraditing reproductive health care providers who are charged in another state for providing services that are legal in Nevada, and bar the state from participating in investigations into certain reproductive health care services.

The entire Nevada Democratic Caucus signed on as co-sponsors of the bill.

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Camalot Todd
Camalot Todd

An award-winning, investigative and enterprise reporter, Camalot Todd has over seven years experience in print, digital, radio and TV journalism.