Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: New abortion laws are about ‘owning women’

Hours after Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey signed into law one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., accused lawmakers of trying to own women.

“Abortion bans aren’t just about controlling women’s bodies. They’re about controlling women’s sexuality. Owning women,” she tweeted a little after 1 a.m. on Thursday. “From limiting birth control to banning comprehensive sex ed, US religious fundamentalists are working hard to outlaw sex that falls outside their theology.”

The Alabama measure, which is the most recent to be signed into law, will ban abortions in almost all cases except where a woman’s health is in danger.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., attends a House Oversight and Reform Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, March 14, 2019. (Photo: Michael Reynolds, European Press Agency)

Just this year alone, Kentucky, Georgia, Mississippi, and Ohio have all passed laws banning abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected, which can occur before many women know they’re pregnant. 

A number of Democratic lawmakers, including many who are running for president, have spoken out against the recent spate of restrictive abortion laws.

Ocasio-Cortez said the recent measures come down to “women’s power.”

“When women are in control of their sexuality, it threatens a core element underpinning right-wing ideology: patriarchy,” she tweeted. “It’s a brutal form of oppression to seize control of the 1 essential thing a person should command: their own body.”

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In Alabama and other conservative states, anti-abortion politicians and activists emboldened by the addition of conservative justices to the U.S. Supreme Court hope to ignite legal fights and eventually overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision. (May 15)

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