By Ophelia Garrett
A California doctor is proposing a floating abortion clinic in the Gulf of Mexico so that women in southern states can evade pro-life laws protecting unborn babies and obtain abortions at sea. The idea is to provide a clinic aboard a ship in federal waters, and out of reach of state laws. What constitutes federal waters varies from state to state, but is between 3 and 9 nautical miles.
Alabama State Senator Chris Elliott said he felt the concept is a “publicity stunt” in the aftermath of last month’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn the 1973 ruling in Roe v. Wade.
Elliott also said the logistics of operating an offshore abortion clinic are problematic.
“One of the problems with trying to get around state law by going offshore is you have to come back to port,” said Elliott. “You cannot break state law and then come back to a port where you have broken the law. That would preclude most Gulf Coast area(s).”
This isn’t the only idea being bounced around to skirt state’s laws. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Rep. Alexandria Occasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) have separately suggested that the federal government could set up clinics in national parks where women could obtain abortions at taxpayer expense.
“We need offshore drilling, not abortions.”- Alabama Gov, Kay Ivey