ASSEMBLY SPEAKER & SENATE MAJORITY LEADER MARK LANDMARK ROE V WADE ANNIVERSARY

Oliver & Buono Celebrate Individual Choice & Personal Freedoms While Christie Marks Anniversary with Anti-Choice Group

Assembly Speaker Sheila Y. Oliver and Senate Majority Leader Barbara Buono today marked the 38th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v Wade decision by calling for a renewed climate of civility that respects an individual’s personal choices while protecting a woman’s fundamental right to make decisions over her own body.

“What Roe v Wade did for women was significant in that it elevated many from second class citizenry by giving them the power to make decisions over their own body when they might have been forced into a situation against their own will or choosing,” said Oliver (D-Essex/Passaic). “Anyone that tries to paint Roe v Wade as a decision that imposes one person’s view on another is missing the point. Ultimately, this decision respected varying ideological opinions by granting every woman the freedom to make decisions based on their own personal beliefs.”

“For millions of women across New Jersey, today is a reminder that our laws protect their fundamental right to privacy and freedom to choose based on their own conscience,” said Buono (D-Middlesex). “Our laws protect the rights of those who gather to voice their opposition to abortion just as much as they protect a woman’s right to choose. For every person who calls himself ‘pro-life’ and calls for all abortion to be illegal is another person who considers herself ‘pro-life’ but recognizes that moniker reflects a personal choice, not a political extreme.”

The legislature’s two highest ranking women also noted that Governor Christie has chosen to mark the anniversary of this monumental court decision by joining with NJ Right to Life, a group well-known for its anti-choice, extremist positions.

“There is nothing objectionable to the Governor’s personal stance against abortion, but his use of his office to promote an anti-choice agenda is troubling. By aligning himself with the far-right in this debate, he is leaving millions of New Jersey women by the wayside. Our nation is not too far removed from an era when a woman’s only choice was no choice. We cannot drag the health and safety of countless women back into the shadows,” added Buono.

“What’s disturbing is that as a former U.S. Attorney, the Governor has chosen to align himself with a group that refuses to respect a nearly-40-year-old decision handed down by the highest court in our land. What Right to Life and the Governor fail to recognize is that Roe v Wade is not a ‘pro-abortion’ decision but a ‘pro choice’ decision and that’s something we should all heed. Quite simply, there should be plenty of room for us all to respect each other’s individual choices while acknowledging each and everyone’s right to make their own personal decisions.”