On January 22, 2024, Vice President Kamala Harris began her nationwide Reproductive Freedoms Tour on what should have been the 51st anniversary of the passing of Roe V. Wade. Arguably, the Vice President’s decision to start the tour on the anniversary is a testament to the grave importance that reproductive rights will have in the election, especially in the battleground state of Wisconsin, where the tour commenced. In Wisconsin, upon the Supreme Court’s overturning, abortion in the state was deemed illegal for 15 months, and abortion access hung in the balance.
Historically, reproductive rights have been a polarizing issue for the American people. This visible contention is due to the pro-choice and pro-life dichotomy birthed out of the fight for rights, which inevitably rethought the civil liberties of all people. This sentiment has been at the heart of the tour’s mission, especially as the Vice President exclaimed, “Every time reproductive freedom has been on the ballot, the people of America have voted for freedom.” It is not that reproductive rights have become merely a rallying issue for women, but it has been refashioned into a call to action for all Americans.
As the Vice President stands on the battlefield where reproductive rights continue to be targeted, the American people are being called into action to make a decision not in the name of choice but in the name of freedom. Thus, in this prime moment, Vice President Harris finds herself persuading voters to consider how the overturning of Roe has led to drastic changes that challenge the liberties and freedom that our founders fought for.
For the Biden-Harris administration, the civil rights of the American people have been at the core of the administration’s interest, especially when considering their predecessor, who has been associated with the loss of these freedoms. As the Biden-Harris campaign continues to rally its base around reproductive rights, the campaign has released a new campaign ad entitled “Forced,” where an OBGYN personally reflects on her need for abortion and reaffirms that this issue could have been avoided had it not been for the previous administration.
Overturning Roe v. Wade has gone beyond the right for a woman to choose, but has also critically refashioned the freedoms and civil liberties for which our democracy has become an icon. It will inevitably play a significant role in November’s election.