Democratic governors in Colorado and North Carolina signed executive orders on Wednesday to safeguard abortion rights following the Supreme Court’s overturning of the landmark Roe v. Wade case that had constitutionally protected the right to abortion. The Court decided to return the right to individual states to determine abortion laws.

The executive orders will protect those who come to North Carolina or Colorado for the procedure from being prosecuted or investigated in their home state.

“This order will help protect North Carolina doctors and nurses and their patients from cruel right-wing criminal laws passed by other states,” Gov. Roy Cooper announced in one of the few southern states that allow abortions up to 20 weeks and if there is a medical emergency.

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis issued a similar statement.


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“We are taking needed action to protect individual freedom and the privacy of Coloradans,” he wrote on Twitter. “This important step will ensure that Colorado’s thriving economy and workforce are not impacted based on personal health decisions that are wrongly being criminalized in other states.”

Both governors noted that the executive orders serve as a precautionary move and that neither state has received a request to investigate an abortion case from states with restrictive laws.

After the overruling of Roe v. Wade became official at the end of June, many states made the decision to ban or restrict abortion rights. Polis and Cooper’s executive orders respond to laws like the one in Texas that bans abortions as soon as there is a heartbeat, which happens around six weeks.

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