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How our political leaders responded to Roe v. Wade being overturned

The US Supreme Court Building in Washington, DC. Photo / AP Photo, J. Scott Applewhite

Editor's note: This story has been updated as politicians respond

Roe v. Wade was officially overturned by the US Supreme Court this weekend, stripping the rights of US women to have an abortion and autonomy over their own bodies. 

The ruling means that in many US states, abortion immediately became illegal; others will soon follow suit (there are some, like California and New York, that have protected these rights). It will not prevent abortions, but will prevent safe abortions for many women. It rolls back the reproductive rights hard fought for by feminists since the 1970s.

The court ruled 6-3, with liberal Justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor issuing a powerful joint dissent (their full dissent is 66 pages; it’s worth reading if you want to feel further heartbroken and enraged).⁠

In it, they wrote: "Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of today's decision is certain: the curtailment of women's rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens.

“After today, young women will come of age with fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers had.

“With sorrow – for this court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection – we dissent.”

Some conservative justices, including Brett Kavanaugh, had said in earlier testimony that Roe v. Wade was settled legal precedent, which this ruling obviously contradicts entirely.

It is easy for some to dismiss this as a far away problem in the United States, distant from our own law and politics.

National party leader Christopher Luxon, who in an interview with Newshub in 2021 said he is pro-life and agreed that abortion is tantamount to murder, wrote on Twitter following the ruling that “Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us”. 

He added that abortion “laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government”. However in May, RNZ reported the party’s Dr Shane Reti as saying he would not rule out narrowing access and that it would be up to the National caucus: "That would always be a decision for caucus, and so I'm not going to offer a position here now, but we are mindful in watching what happens with Roe vs Wade".

It is true that New Zealand law and politics are vastly different to the US. But abortion was only decriminalised - that is, classified as a health matter rather than criminal - here in 2020. And Roe v. Wade has long been a global symbol of women’s and reproductive rights, and the power of the courts in protecting those rights.

This ruling in the US shows how fragile these assumed longtime protections can be.

It’s important to know where our political leaders stand on these issues, especially as we approach what is almost certainly going to be a tumultuous election campaign in 2023.

Here are some responses, both official and on social media, to this weekend’s heartbreaking news from New Zealand politicians - and how they voted in regards to Aotearoa’s most recent abortion legislation.

Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister, Labour

“Watching the removal of a woman’s fundamental right to make decisions over her own body is incredibly upsetting.

“Here in New Zealand we recently legislated to decriminalise abortion and treat it as a health rather than criminal issue. That change was grounded in the fundamental belief that it’s a woman’s right to choose.

“People are absolutely entitled to have deeply held convictions on this issue. But those personal beliefs should never rob another from making their own decisions. To see that principle now lost in the United States feels like a loss for women everywhere.

“When there are so many issues to tackle, so many challenges that face women and girls, we need progress, not to fight the same fights and move backwards.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Christopher Luxon, leader of the opposition, National

“The complete removal of abortion law in the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the USA is distressing for many women everywhere and I empathise with them.

"Our situation in New Zealand is very different from that occurring in the USA. New Zealand’s abortion laws were debated in detail, voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament during 2019-2020.

"I have been consistent since becoming leader that these laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National Government, and these health services will remain fully funded.

"I understand how deeply held people’s views on abortion are. It’s important to me that women in New Zealand have certainty that if I am elected Prime Minister these issues will not be put back on the table for further debate.

"Simon O’Connor’s post was taken down because it was causing distress and does not represent the position of the National Party."

“Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us. NZ’s abortion laws were voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament. These laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

David Seymour, ACT leader

“What’s happening, Twitter? Great question. It may be that this is just returning the question to a State one, but half the States are going back a century in just a few days.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Labour

“The US Supreme Courts overturning of Roe v. Wade Is draconian and does not support the right of women to choice. How can this happen?”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Grant Robertson, Deputy Prime Minister, Labour

"Such a distressing day even if we knew it was coming. I am thinking of, and standing with all those who will be hurt, harmed or affected by this dreadful decision.  I am pleased we made the progress we did last term, but what has happened in the USA reminds us all that we must be vigilant to protect the hard won gains".

"The world feels as volatile, scary and uncertain as it has for many decades right now.  After two years of stress and anxiety from the pandemic, the forces of hate and bigotry seem to be on the rise.  

At one level I feel like I don't want to overstate or amplify them. Its just a small minority right?   Most people want women to have the right to choose, don't they? It was a lone gunman overnight in Oslo as the city prepared for its pride parade who went on a rampage at gay bar killing two and injuring others, wasn't it?  The anti vax guy in a public meeting last week who yelled at me that he was going to "f*cking get you, you homo c*nt",  he is not representative of a great movement is he?

The answer does not matter.  The response does.  As we view with horror the decision by the US Supreme Court to take away reproductive choice from millions of women, as we hear about another hate motivated crime against the gay community, or attempts to marginalise the trans community our response must be one to stand together and support and protect each other.

We simply have to stand up, organise and make sure rights are not just protected but enhanced.  If you see bigotry and racism call it out, even if it is not directed at you.  If you know someone is dangerous or is saying things that are threatening, don't let it slide by, report it.  And make sure that the people you elect will uphold the values of inclusion, equality and equity.

I continue to believe that Aotearoa New Zealand can lead the way. I felt so proud of us on Friday during the Matariki celebrations.  I know that New Zealanders are for the most part fair minded and generous.  Let's hold tight to that.  Kia kaha."

(Later speaking to AM's Melissa Chan-Green)

"I think it's incredibly distressing for women in America and indeed around the world. Fifty years of what people thought was a settled situation about access to reproductive rights turned over overnight and I can absolutely understand the distress that has caused people not just in the US but also here in New Zealand.

"I think New Zealanders need to ask themselves what Christopher Luxon's stance on abortion actually is, he managed to put out two statements in two days over the weekend and previously he's said that abortion is akin to murder.

"New Zealanders know where Jacinda Ardern and Labour stand on this, we decriminalised abortion, we put it into a health setting and while Mr Luxon might be saying convenient political things now, I think people know where he really stands and obviously people will judge on what he says as well as his actions.

"Does that mean he will make sure that all National members don't bring forward a private members bill? Would he make sure that it wasn't part of the coalition? The issue for Christopher Luxon here is he said what he believes about abortion and now he's spinning to tell New Zealanders a different story.

"We've been consistent, we passed the law. My view is that it is important for New Zealand women to know that it is settled. We have Simon O'Connor, we have Simeon Brown, we have other National MPs saying what they've said. Chris Luxon is in overdrive spinning against that but we know what he himself believes."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Simon O’Connor, National MP for Tamaki

On Saturday morning the National MP shared a post on Facebook and an Instagram Story, writing “today is a good day", which was interpreted as a comment on the ruling. He later deleted the post, after being asked by his party to remove it.

On Tuesday O'Connor commented further, with Stuff reporting:

“I am clearly pro-life, there is no secret in that, but the spiralling distress and again the nature of the comments and the vitriol between individuals, I no longer wanted to be facilitating that by having such a post-up,” O’Connor said at Parliament on Tuesday.

O’Connor said National MPs were not “gagged” on the issue, and it is still possible for an MP to put forward a member’s bill on abortion. However, he had no intention of doing so.

“The caucus has made a very clear statement that national will not be revisiting abortion law in the future government,” he said.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against. When it passed, O’Connor spoke and quoted a bible verse: “Mihi vindicta: ego retribuam dicit Dominus” which roughly translates to: “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): Against.

Jan Tinetti, Minister for Women, Labour

"As Minister for Women I am, like so many, upset and angered by the removal of rights for many women in the USA. It is a reminder that we must protect & cherish the rights we have fought and won."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Sarah Pallett, Labour MP for Ilam

“Roe v Wade overturned. This will not prevent abortions, it prevents SAFE abortions. This is horrifying news and must be challenged.”

"The legislation that depends on Roe is now at risk. Legislation protecting access to contraception, same sex marriage … and it’s already being challenged. This is a globally concerning issue."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Green Party 

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

Jan Logie, Green Party

The US Supreme Court’s decision on abortion is a reminder that we must take nothing for granted in Aotearoa, the Green Party says. 

“Aotearoa should be a place where everyone, no matter where they are from, or who they love, can choose what is right for their body and their future. We cannot let the Supreme Court decision embolden those who do not share these values and want to limit access to abortion,” says Green MP Jan Logie.  

“New Zealand took a big step forward in 2020 when Parliament finally voted to decriminalise abortion. But the vote was too close to leave anything for granted. The fallout from the Supreme Court’s heart-breaking decision will reverberate around the world. Now more than ever we must remain alert to those in New Zealand who still want to control a person’s right to choose.

“Abortion is a healthcare issue, plain and simple. But it doesn’t end there. For people to be able to make a genuine choice about whether to be or stay pregnant, we must also make sure they have everything they need to be able to provide for themselves and their families, put a roof over their heads, and food on the table. 

“Rent controls, liveable incomes, free public transport, action to reduce basic costs like food and energy, affordable access to healthcare, limiting secret political donations - these are all steps on the path to a fairer, equitable future where everyone has the right to reproductive freedom. 

“People are allowed to feel angry or scared at what has happened in the United States. We cannot let it deter us from the work we have ahead to protect and improve access to safe and affordable abortion care in Aotearoa. 

“There is still so much to do to create the fairer, more equitable Aotearoa we all deserve - and a strong Green voice in Government and Parliament can help make it happen,” says Jan Logie.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Chlöe Swarbrick, Green Party MP for Auckland Central

"Prohibiting abortions doesn’t stop abortions. It prevents safe, regulated abortions. It prevents access for those without the resources to travel to areas where abortion is legal. 

"Solidarity with Americans fighting for restoration of their rights to healthcare."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For. 

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For. 

Golriz Ghahraman, Green Party

"So heart broken for America. If bodily autonomy of the most marginalised is at stake every hard-fought right is. We need to remember how they got there: big money lobbies rule American politicians. Limiting secret big $ donations is urgent for our democracy #AbortionIsHealthcare"

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

No items found.
The US Supreme Court Building in Washington, DC. Photo / AP Photo, J. Scott Applewhite

Editor's note: This story has been updated as politicians respond

Roe v. Wade was officially overturned by the US Supreme Court this weekend, stripping the rights of US women to have an abortion and autonomy over their own bodies. 

The ruling means that in many US states, abortion immediately became illegal; others will soon follow suit (there are some, like California and New York, that have protected these rights). It will not prevent abortions, but will prevent safe abortions for many women. It rolls back the reproductive rights hard fought for by feminists since the 1970s.

The court ruled 6-3, with liberal Justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor issuing a powerful joint dissent (their full dissent is 66 pages; it’s worth reading if you want to feel further heartbroken and enraged).⁠

In it, they wrote: "Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of today's decision is certain: the curtailment of women's rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens.

“After today, young women will come of age with fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers had.

“With sorrow – for this court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection – we dissent.”

Some conservative justices, including Brett Kavanaugh, had said in earlier testimony that Roe v. Wade was settled legal precedent, which this ruling obviously contradicts entirely.

It is easy for some to dismiss this as a far away problem in the United States, distant from our own law and politics.

National party leader Christopher Luxon, who in an interview with Newshub in 2021 said he is pro-life and agreed that abortion is tantamount to murder, wrote on Twitter following the ruling that “Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us”. 

He added that abortion “laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government”. However in May, RNZ reported the party’s Dr Shane Reti as saying he would not rule out narrowing access and that it would be up to the National caucus: "That would always be a decision for caucus, and so I'm not going to offer a position here now, but we are mindful in watching what happens with Roe vs Wade".

It is true that New Zealand law and politics are vastly different to the US. But abortion was only decriminalised - that is, classified as a health matter rather than criminal - here in 2020. And Roe v. Wade has long been a global symbol of women’s and reproductive rights, and the power of the courts in protecting those rights.

This ruling in the US shows how fragile these assumed longtime protections can be.

It’s important to know where our political leaders stand on these issues, especially as we approach what is almost certainly going to be a tumultuous election campaign in 2023.

Here are some responses, both official and on social media, to this weekend’s heartbreaking news from New Zealand politicians - and how they voted in regards to Aotearoa’s most recent abortion legislation.

Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister, Labour

“Watching the removal of a woman’s fundamental right to make decisions over her own body is incredibly upsetting.

“Here in New Zealand we recently legislated to decriminalise abortion and treat it as a health rather than criminal issue. That change was grounded in the fundamental belief that it’s a woman’s right to choose.

“People are absolutely entitled to have deeply held convictions on this issue. But those personal beliefs should never rob another from making their own decisions. To see that principle now lost in the United States feels like a loss for women everywhere.

“When there are so many issues to tackle, so many challenges that face women and girls, we need progress, not to fight the same fights and move backwards.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Christopher Luxon, leader of the opposition, National

“The complete removal of abortion law in the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the USA is distressing for many women everywhere and I empathise with them.

"Our situation in New Zealand is very different from that occurring in the USA. New Zealand’s abortion laws were debated in detail, voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament during 2019-2020.

"I have been consistent since becoming leader that these laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National Government, and these health services will remain fully funded.

"I understand how deeply held people’s views on abortion are. It’s important to me that women in New Zealand have certainty that if I am elected Prime Minister these issues will not be put back on the table for further debate.

"Simon O’Connor’s post was taken down because it was causing distress and does not represent the position of the National Party."

“Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us. NZ’s abortion laws were voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament. These laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

David Seymour, ACT leader

“What’s happening, Twitter? Great question. It may be that this is just returning the question to a State one, but half the States are going back a century in just a few days.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Labour

“The US Supreme Courts overturning of Roe v. Wade Is draconian and does not support the right of women to choice. How can this happen?”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Grant Robertson, Deputy Prime Minister, Labour

"Such a distressing day even if we knew it was coming. I am thinking of, and standing with all those who will be hurt, harmed or affected by this dreadful decision.  I am pleased we made the progress we did last term, but what has happened in the USA reminds us all that we must be vigilant to protect the hard won gains".

"The world feels as volatile, scary and uncertain as it has for many decades right now.  After two years of stress and anxiety from the pandemic, the forces of hate and bigotry seem to be on the rise.  

At one level I feel like I don't want to overstate or amplify them. Its just a small minority right?   Most people want women to have the right to choose, don't they? It was a lone gunman overnight in Oslo as the city prepared for its pride parade who went on a rampage at gay bar killing two and injuring others, wasn't it?  The anti vax guy in a public meeting last week who yelled at me that he was going to "f*cking get you, you homo c*nt",  he is not representative of a great movement is he?

The answer does not matter.  The response does.  As we view with horror the decision by the US Supreme Court to take away reproductive choice from millions of women, as we hear about another hate motivated crime against the gay community, or attempts to marginalise the trans community our response must be one to stand together and support and protect each other.

We simply have to stand up, organise and make sure rights are not just protected but enhanced.  If you see bigotry and racism call it out, even if it is not directed at you.  If you know someone is dangerous or is saying things that are threatening, don't let it slide by, report it.  And make sure that the people you elect will uphold the values of inclusion, equality and equity.

I continue to believe that Aotearoa New Zealand can lead the way. I felt so proud of us on Friday during the Matariki celebrations.  I know that New Zealanders are for the most part fair minded and generous.  Let's hold tight to that.  Kia kaha."

(Later speaking to AM's Melissa Chan-Green)

"I think it's incredibly distressing for women in America and indeed around the world. Fifty years of what people thought was a settled situation about access to reproductive rights turned over overnight and I can absolutely understand the distress that has caused people not just in the US but also here in New Zealand.

"I think New Zealanders need to ask themselves what Christopher Luxon's stance on abortion actually is, he managed to put out two statements in two days over the weekend and previously he's said that abortion is akin to murder.

"New Zealanders know where Jacinda Ardern and Labour stand on this, we decriminalised abortion, we put it into a health setting and while Mr Luxon might be saying convenient political things now, I think people know where he really stands and obviously people will judge on what he says as well as his actions.

"Does that mean he will make sure that all National members don't bring forward a private members bill? Would he make sure that it wasn't part of the coalition? The issue for Christopher Luxon here is he said what he believes about abortion and now he's spinning to tell New Zealanders a different story.

"We've been consistent, we passed the law. My view is that it is important for New Zealand women to know that it is settled. We have Simon O'Connor, we have Simeon Brown, we have other National MPs saying what they've said. Chris Luxon is in overdrive spinning against that but we know what he himself believes."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Simon O’Connor, National MP for Tamaki

On Saturday morning the National MP shared a post on Facebook and an Instagram Story, writing “today is a good day", which was interpreted as a comment on the ruling. He later deleted the post, after being asked by his party to remove it.

On Tuesday O'Connor commented further, with Stuff reporting:

“I am clearly pro-life, there is no secret in that, but the spiralling distress and again the nature of the comments and the vitriol between individuals, I no longer wanted to be facilitating that by having such a post-up,” O’Connor said at Parliament on Tuesday.

O’Connor said National MPs were not “gagged” on the issue, and it is still possible for an MP to put forward a member’s bill on abortion. However, he had no intention of doing so.

“The caucus has made a very clear statement that national will not be revisiting abortion law in the future government,” he said.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against. When it passed, O’Connor spoke and quoted a bible verse: “Mihi vindicta: ego retribuam dicit Dominus” which roughly translates to: “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): Against.

Jan Tinetti, Minister for Women, Labour

"As Minister for Women I am, like so many, upset and angered by the removal of rights for many women in the USA. It is a reminder that we must protect & cherish the rights we have fought and won."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Sarah Pallett, Labour MP for Ilam

“Roe v Wade overturned. This will not prevent abortions, it prevents SAFE abortions. This is horrifying news and must be challenged.”

"The legislation that depends on Roe is now at risk. Legislation protecting access to contraception, same sex marriage … and it’s already being challenged. This is a globally concerning issue."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Green Party 

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

Jan Logie, Green Party

The US Supreme Court’s decision on abortion is a reminder that we must take nothing for granted in Aotearoa, the Green Party says. 

“Aotearoa should be a place where everyone, no matter where they are from, or who they love, can choose what is right for their body and their future. We cannot let the Supreme Court decision embolden those who do not share these values and want to limit access to abortion,” says Green MP Jan Logie.  

“New Zealand took a big step forward in 2020 when Parliament finally voted to decriminalise abortion. But the vote was too close to leave anything for granted. The fallout from the Supreme Court’s heart-breaking decision will reverberate around the world. Now more than ever we must remain alert to those in New Zealand who still want to control a person’s right to choose.

“Abortion is a healthcare issue, plain and simple. But it doesn’t end there. For people to be able to make a genuine choice about whether to be or stay pregnant, we must also make sure they have everything they need to be able to provide for themselves and their families, put a roof over their heads, and food on the table. 

“Rent controls, liveable incomes, free public transport, action to reduce basic costs like food and energy, affordable access to healthcare, limiting secret political donations - these are all steps on the path to a fairer, equitable future where everyone has the right to reproductive freedom. 

“People are allowed to feel angry or scared at what has happened in the United States. We cannot let it deter us from the work we have ahead to protect and improve access to safe and affordable abortion care in Aotearoa. 

“There is still so much to do to create the fairer, more equitable Aotearoa we all deserve - and a strong Green voice in Government and Parliament can help make it happen,” says Jan Logie.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Chlöe Swarbrick, Green Party MP for Auckland Central

"Prohibiting abortions doesn’t stop abortions. It prevents safe, regulated abortions. It prevents access for those without the resources to travel to areas where abortion is legal. 

"Solidarity with Americans fighting for restoration of their rights to healthcare."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For. 

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For. 

Golriz Ghahraman, Green Party

"So heart broken for America. If bodily autonomy of the most marginalised is at stake every hard-fought right is. We need to remember how they got there: big money lobbies rule American politicians. Limiting secret big $ donations is urgent for our democracy #AbortionIsHealthcare"

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

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No items found.

How our political leaders responded to Roe v. Wade being overturned

The US Supreme Court Building in Washington, DC. Photo / AP Photo, J. Scott Applewhite

Editor's note: This story has been updated as politicians respond

Roe v. Wade was officially overturned by the US Supreme Court this weekend, stripping the rights of US women to have an abortion and autonomy over their own bodies. 

The ruling means that in many US states, abortion immediately became illegal; others will soon follow suit (there are some, like California and New York, that have protected these rights). It will not prevent abortions, but will prevent safe abortions for many women. It rolls back the reproductive rights hard fought for by feminists since the 1970s.

The court ruled 6-3, with liberal Justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor issuing a powerful joint dissent (their full dissent is 66 pages; it’s worth reading if you want to feel further heartbroken and enraged).⁠

In it, they wrote: "Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of today's decision is certain: the curtailment of women's rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens.

“After today, young women will come of age with fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers had.

“With sorrow – for this court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection – we dissent.”

Some conservative justices, including Brett Kavanaugh, had said in earlier testimony that Roe v. Wade was settled legal precedent, which this ruling obviously contradicts entirely.

It is easy for some to dismiss this as a far away problem in the United States, distant from our own law and politics.

National party leader Christopher Luxon, who in an interview with Newshub in 2021 said he is pro-life and agreed that abortion is tantamount to murder, wrote on Twitter following the ruling that “Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us”. 

He added that abortion “laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government”. However in May, RNZ reported the party’s Dr Shane Reti as saying he would not rule out narrowing access and that it would be up to the National caucus: "That would always be a decision for caucus, and so I'm not going to offer a position here now, but we are mindful in watching what happens with Roe vs Wade".

It is true that New Zealand law and politics are vastly different to the US. But abortion was only decriminalised - that is, classified as a health matter rather than criminal - here in 2020. And Roe v. Wade has long been a global symbol of women’s and reproductive rights, and the power of the courts in protecting those rights.

This ruling in the US shows how fragile these assumed longtime protections can be.

It’s important to know where our political leaders stand on these issues, especially as we approach what is almost certainly going to be a tumultuous election campaign in 2023.

Here are some responses, both official and on social media, to this weekend’s heartbreaking news from New Zealand politicians - and how they voted in regards to Aotearoa’s most recent abortion legislation.

Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister, Labour

“Watching the removal of a woman’s fundamental right to make decisions over her own body is incredibly upsetting.

“Here in New Zealand we recently legislated to decriminalise abortion and treat it as a health rather than criminal issue. That change was grounded in the fundamental belief that it’s a woman’s right to choose.

“People are absolutely entitled to have deeply held convictions on this issue. But those personal beliefs should never rob another from making their own decisions. To see that principle now lost in the United States feels like a loss for women everywhere.

“When there are so many issues to tackle, so many challenges that face women and girls, we need progress, not to fight the same fights and move backwards.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Christopher Luxon, leader of the opposition, National

“The complete removal of abortion law in the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the USA is distressing for many women everywhere and I empathise with them.

"Our situation in New Zealand is very different from that occurring in the USA. New Zealand’s abortion laws were debated in detail, voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament during 2019-2020.

"I have been consistent since becoming leader that these laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National Government, and these health services will remain fully funded.

"I understand how deeply held people’s views on abortion are. It’s important to me that women in New Zealand have certainty that if I am elected Prime Minister these issues will not be put back on the table for further debate.

"Simon O’Connor’s post was taken down because it was causing distress and does not represent the position of the National Party."

“Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us. NZ’s abortion laws were voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament. These laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

David Seymour, ACT leader

“What’s happening, Twitter? Great question. It may be that this is just returning the question to a State one, but half the States are going back a century in just a few days.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Labour

“The US Supreme Courts overturning of Roe v. Wade Is draconian and does not support the right of women to choice. How can this happen?”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Grant Robertson, Deputy Prime Minister, Labour

"Such a distressing day even if we knew it was coming. I am thinking of, and standing with all those who will be hurt, harmed or affected by this dreadful decision.  I am pleased we made the progress we did last term, but what has happened in the USA reminds us all that we must be vigilant to protect the hard won gains".

"The world feels as volatile, scary and uncertain as it has for many decades right now.  After two years of stress and anxiety from the pandemic, the forces of hate and bigotry seem to be on the rise.  

At one level I feel like I don't want to overstate or amplify them. Its just a small minority right?   Most people want women to have the right to choose, don't they? It was a lone gunman overnight in Oslo as the city prepared for its pride parade who went on a rampage at gay bar killing two and injuring others, wasn't it?  The anti vax guy in a public meeting last week who yelled at me that he was going to "f*cking get you, you homo c*nt",  he is not representative of a great movement is he?

The answer does not matter.  The response does.  As we view with horror the decision by the US Supreme Court to take away reproductive choice from millions of women, as we hear about another hate motivated crime against the gay community, or attempts to marginalise the trans community our response must be one to stand together and support and protect each other.

We simply have to stand up, organise and make sure rights are not just protected but enhanced.  If you see bigotry and racism call it out, even if it is not directed at you.  If you know someone is dangerous or is saying things that are threatening, don't let it slide by, report it.  And make sure that the people you elect will uphold the values of inclusion, equality and equity.

I continue to believe that Aotearoa New Zealand can lead the way. I felt so proud of us on Friday during the Matariki celebrations.  I know that New Zealanders are for the most part fair minded and generous.  Let's hold tight to that.  Kia kaha."

(Later speaking to AM's Melissa Chan-Green)

"I think it's incredibly distressing for women in America and indeed around the world. Fifty years of what people thought was a settled situation about access to reproductive rights turned over overnight and I can absolutely understand the distress that has caused people not just in the US but also here in New Zealand.

"I think New Zealanders need to ask themselves what Christopher Luxon's stance on abortion actually is, he managed to put out two statements in two days over the weekend and previously he's said that abortion is akin to murder.

"New Zealanders know where Jacinda Ardern and Labour stand on this, we decriminalised abortion, we put it into a health setting and while Mr Luxon might be saying convenient political things now, I think people know where he really stands and obviously people will judge on what he says as well as his actions.

"Does that mean he will make sure that all National members don't bring forward a private members bill? Would he make sure that it wasn't part of the coalition? The issue for Christopher Luxon here is he said what he believes about abortion and now he's spinning to tell New Zealanders a different story.

"We've been consistent, we passed the law. My view is that it is important for New Zealand women to know that it is settled. We have Simon O'Connor, we have Simeon Brown, we have other National MPs saying what they've said. Chris Luxon is in overdrive spinning against that but we know what he himself believes."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Simon O’Connor, National MP for Tamaki

On Saturday morning the National MP shared a post on Facebook and an Instagram Story, writing “today is a good day", which was interpreted as a comment on the ruling. He later deleted the post, after being asked by his party to remove it.

On Tuesday O'Connor commented further, with Stuff reporting:

“I am clearly pro-life, there is no secret in that, but the spiralling distress and again the nature of the comments and the vitriol between individuals, I no longer wanted to be facilitating that by having such a post-up,” O’Connor said at Parliament on Tuesday.

O’Connor said National MPs were not “gagged” on the issue, and it is still possible for an MP to put forward a member’s bill on abortion. However, he had no intention of doing so.

“The caucus has made a very clear statement that national will not be revisiting abortion law in the future government,” he said.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against. When it passed, O’Connor spoke and quoted a bible verse: “Mihi vindicta: ego retribuam dicit Dominus” which roughly translates to: “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): Against.

Jan Tinetti, Minister for Women, Labour

"As Minister for Women I am, like so many, upset and angered by the removal of rights for many women in the USA. It is a reminder that we must protect & cherish the rights we have fought and won."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Sarah Pallett, Labour MP for Ilam

“Roe v Wade overturned. This will not prevent abortions, it prevents SAFE abortions. This is horrifying news and must be challenged.”

"The legislation that depends on Roe is now at risk. Legislation protecting access to contraception, same sex marriage … and it’s already being challenged. This is a globally concerning issue."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Green Party 

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

Jan Logie, Green Party

The US Supreme Court’s decision on abortion is a reminder that we must take nothing for granted in Aotearoa, the Green Party says. 

“Aotearoa should be a place where everyone, no matter where they are from, or who they love, can choose what is right for their body and their future. We cannot let the Supreme Court decision embolden those who do not share these values and want to limit access to abortion,” says Green MP Jan Logie.  

“New Zealand took a big step forward in 2020 when Parliament finally voted to decriminalise abortion. But the vote was too close to leave anything for granted. The fallout from the Supreme Court’s heart-breaking decision will reverberate around the world. Now more than ever we must remain alert to those in New Zealand who still want to control a person’s right to choose.

“Abortion is a healthcare issue, plain and simple. But it doesn’t end there. For people to be able to make a genuine choice about whether to be or stay pregnant, we must also make sure they have everything they need to be able to provide for themselves and their families, put a roof over their heads, and food on the table. 

“Rent controls, liveable incomes, free public transport, action to reduce basic costs like food and energy, affordable access to healthcare, limiting secret political donations - these are all steps on the path to a fairer, equitable future where everyone has the right to reproductive freedom. 

“People are allowed to feel angry or scared at what has happened in the United States. We cannot let it deter us from the work we have ahead to protect and improve access to safe and affordable abortion care in Aotearoa. 

“There is still so much to do to create the fairer, more equitable Aotearoa we all deserve - and a strong Green voice in Government and Parliament can help make it happen,” says Jan Logie.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Chlöe Swarbrick, Green Party MP for Auckland Central

"Prohibiting abortions doesn’t stop abortions. It prevents safe, regulated abortions. It prevents access for those without the resources to travel to areas where abortion is legal. 

"Solidarity with Americans fighting for restoration of their rights to healthcare."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For. 

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For. 

Golriz Ghahraman, Green Party

"So heart broken for America. If bodily autonomy of the most marginalised is at stake every hard-fought right is. We need to remember how they got there: big money lobbies rule American politicians. Limiting secret big $ donations is urgent for our democracy #AbortionIsHealthcare"

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

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How our political leaders responded to Roe v. Wade being overturned

The US Supreme Court Building in Washington, DC. Photo / AP Photo, J. Scott Applewhite

Editor's note: This story has been updated as politicians respond

Roe v. Wade was officially overturned by the US Supreme Court this weekend, stripping the rights of US women to have an abortion and autonomy over their own bodies. 

The ruling means that in many US states, abortion immediately became illegal; others will soon follow suit (there are some, like California and New York, that have protected these rights). It will not prevent abortions, but will prevent safe abortions for many women. It rolls back the reproductive rights hard fought for by feminists since the 1970s.

The court ruled 6-3, with liberal Justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor issuing a powerful joint dissent (their full dissent is 66 pages; it’s worth reading if you want to feel further heartbroken and enraged).⁠

In it, they wrote: "Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of today's decision is certain: the curtailment of women's rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens.

“After today, young women will come of age with fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers had.

“With sorrow – for this court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection – we dissent.”

Some conservative justices, including Brett Kavanaugh, had said in earlier testimony that Roe v. Wade was settled legal precedent, which this ruling obviously contradicts entirely.

It is easy for some to dismiss this as a far away problem in the United States, distant from our own law and politics.

National party leader Christopher Luxon, who in an interview with Newshub in 2021 said he is pro-life and agreed that abortion is tantamount to murder, wrote on Twitter following the ruling that “Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us”. 

He added that abortion “laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government”. However in May, RNZ reported the party’s Dr Shane Reti as saying he would not rule out narrowing access and that it would be up to the National caucus: "That would always be a decision for caucus, and so I'm not going to offer a position here now, but we are mindful in watching what happens with Roe vs Wade".

It is true that New Zealand law and politics are vastly different to the US. But abortion was only decriminalised - that is, classified as a health matter rather than criminal - here in 2020. And Roe v. Wade has long been a global symbol of women’s and reproductive rights, and the power of the courts in protecting those rights.

This ruling in the US shows how fragile these assumed longtime protections can be.

It’s important to know where our political leaders stand on these issues, especially as we approach what is almost certainly going to be a tumultuous election campaign in 2023.

Here are some responses, both official and on social media, to this weekend’s heartbreaking news from New Zealand politicians - and how they voted in regards to Aotearoa’s most recent abortion legislation.

Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister, Labour

“Watching the removal of a woman’s fundamental right to make decisions over her own body is incredibly upsetting.

“Here in New Zealand we recently legislated to decriminalise abortion and treat it as a health rather than criminal issue. That change was grounded in the fundamental belief that it’s a woman’s right to choose.

“People are absolutely entitled to have deeply held convictions on this issue. But those personal beliefs should never rob another from making their own decisions. To see that principle now lost in the United States feels like a loss for women everywhere.

“When there are so many issues to tackle, so many challenges that face women and girls, we need progress, not to fight the same fights and move backwards.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Christopher Luxon, leader of the opposition, National

“The complete removal of abortion law in the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the USA is distressing for many women everywhere and I empathise with them.

"Our situation in New Zealand is very different from that occurring in the USA. New Zealand’s abortion laws were debated in detail, voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament during 2019-2020.

"I have been consistent since becoming leader that these laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National Government, and these health services will remain fully funded.

"I understand how deeply held people’s views on abortion are. It’s important to me that women in New Zealand have certainty that if I am elected Prime Minister these issues will not be put back on the table for further debate.

"Simon O’Connor’s post was taken down because it was causing distress and does not represent the position of the National Party."

“Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us. NZ’s abortion laws were voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament. These laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

David Seymour, ACT leader

“What’s happening, Twitter? Great question. It may be that this is just returning the question to a State one, but half the States are going back a century in just a few days.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Labour

“The US Supreme Courts overturning of Roe v. Wade Is draconian and does not support the right of women to choice. How can this happen?”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Grant Robertson, Deputy Prime Minister, Labour

"Such a distressing day even if we knew it was coming. I am thinking of, and standing with all those who will be hurt, harmed or affected by this dreadful decision.  I am pleased we made the progress we did last term, but what has happened in the USA reminds us all that we must be vigilant to protect the hard won gains".

"The world feels as volatile, scary and uncertain as it has for many decades right now.  After two years of stress and anxiety from the pandemic, the forces of hate and bigotry seem to be on the rise.  

At one level I feel like I don't want to overstate or amplify them. Its just a small minority right?   Most people want women to have the right to choose, don't they? It was a lone gunman overnight in Oslo as the city prepared for its pride parade who went on a rampage at gay bar killing two and injuring others, wasn't it?  The anti vax guy in a public meeting last week who yelled at me that he was going to "f*cking get you, you homo c*nt",  he is not representative of a great movement is he?

The answer does not matter.  The response does.  As we view with horror the decision by the US Supreme Court to take away reproductive choice from millions of women, as we hear about another hate motivated crime against the gay community, or attempts to marginalise the trans community our response must be one to stand together and support and protect each other.

We simply have to stand up, organise and make sure rights are not just protected but enhanced.  If you see bigotry and racism call it out, even if it is not directed at you.  If you know someone is dangerous or is saying things that are threatening, don't let it slide by, report it.  And make sure that the people you elect will uphold the values of inclusion, equality and equity.

I continue to believe that Aotearoa New Zealand can lead the way. I felt so proud of us on Friday during the Matariki celebrations.  I know that New Zealanders are for the most part fair minded and generous.  Let's hold tight to that.  Kia kaha."

(Later speaking to AM's Melissa Chan-Green)

"I think it's incredibly distressing for women in America and indeed around the world. Fifty years of what people thought was a settled situation about access to reproductive rights turned over overnight and I can absolutely understand the distress that has caused people not just in the US but also here in New Zealand.

"I think New Zealanders need to ask themselves what Christopher Luxon's stance on abortion actually is, he managed to put out two statements in two days over the weekend and previously he's said that abortion is akin to murder.

"New Zealanders know where Jacinda Ardern and Labour stand on this, we decriminalised abortion, we put it into a health setting and while Mr Luxon might be saying convenient political things now, I think people know where he really stands and obviously people will judge on what he says as well as his actions.

"Does that mean he will make sure that all National members don't bring forward a private members bill? Would he make sure that it wasn't part of the coalition? The issue for Christopher Luxon here is he said what he believes about abortion and now he's spinning to tell New Zealanders a different story.

"We've been consistent, we passed the law. My view is that it is important for New Zealand women to know that it is settled. We have Simon O'Connor, we have Simeon Brown, we have other National MPs saying what they've said. Chris Luxon is in overdrive spinning against that but we know what he himself believes."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Simon O’Connor, National MP for Tamaki

On Saturday morning the National MP shared a post on Facebook and an Instagram Story, writing “today is a good day", which was interpreted as a comment on the ruling. He later deleted the post, after being asked by his party to remove it.

On Tuesday O'Connor commented further, with Stuff reporting:

“I am clearly pro-life, there is no secret in that, but the spiralling distress and again the nature of the comments and the vitriol between individuals, I no longer wanted to be facilitating that by having such a post-up,” O’Connor said at Parliament on Tuesday.

O’Connor said National MPs were not “gagged” on the issue, and it is still possible for an MP to put forward a member’s bill on abortion. However, he had no intention of doing so.

“The caucus has made a very clear statement that national will not be revisiting abortion law in the future government,” he said.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against. When it passed, O’Connor spoke and quoted a bible verse: “Mihi vindicta: ego retribuam dicit Dominus” which roughly translates to: “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): Against.

Jan Tinetti, Minister for Women, Labour

"As Minister for Women I am, like so many, upset and angered by the removal of rights for many women in the USA. It is a reminder that we must protect & cherish the rights we have fought and won."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Sarah Pallett, Labour MP for Ilam

“Roe v Wade overturned. This will not prevent abortions, it prevents SAFE abortions. This is horrifying news and must be challenged.”

"The legislation that depends on Roe is now at risk. Legislation protecting access to contraception, same sex marriage … and it’s already being challenged. This is a globally concerning issue."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Green Party 

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

Jan Logie, Green Party

The US Supreme Court’s decision on abortion is a reminder that we must take nothing for granted in Aotearoa, the Green Party says. 

“Aotearoa should be a place where everyone, no matter where they are from, or who they love, can choose what is right for their body and their future. We cannot let the Supreme Court decision embolden those who do not share these values and want to limit access to abortion,” says Green MP Jan Logie.  

“New Zealand took a big step forward in 2020 when Parliament finally voted to decriminalise abortion. But the vote was too close to leave anything for granted. The fallout from the Supreme Court’s heart-breaking decision will reverberate around the world. Now more than ever we must remain alert to those in New Zealand who still want to control a person’s right to choose.

“Abortion is a healthcare issue, plain and simple. But it doesn’t end there. For people to be able to make a genuine choice about whether to be or stay pregnant, we must also make sure they have everything they need to be able to provide for themselves and their families, put a roof over their heads, and food on the table. 

“Rent controls, liveable incomes, free public transport, action to reduce basic costs like food and energy, affordable access to healthcare, limiting secret political donations - these are all steps on the path to a fairer, equitable future where everyone has the right to reproductive freedom. 

“People are allowed to feel angry or scared at what has happened in the United States. We cannot let it deter us from the work we have ahead to protect and improve access to safe and affordable abortion care in Aotearoa. 

“There is still so much to do to create the fairer, more equitable Aotearoa we all deserve - and a strong Green voice in Government and Parliament can help make it happen,” says Jan Logie.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Chlöe Swarbrick, Green Party MP for Auckland Central

"Prohibiting abortions doesn’t stop abortions. It prevents safe, regulated abortions. It prevents access for those without the resources to travel to areas where abortion is legal. 

"Solidarity with Americans fighting for restoration of their rights to healthcare."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For. 

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For. 

Golriz Ghahraman, Green Party

"So heart broken for America. If bodily autonomy of the most marginalised is at stake every hard-fought right is. We need to remember how they got there: big money lobbies rule American politicians. Limiting secret big $ donations is urgent for our democracy #AbortionIsHealthcare"

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Creativity, evocative visual storytelling and good journalism come at a price. Support our work and join the Ensemble membership program
No items found.
The US Supreme Court Building in Washington, DC. Photo / AP Photo, J. Scott Applewhite

Editor's note: This story has been updated as politicians respond

Roe v. Wade was officially overturned by the US Supreme Court this weekend, stripping the rights of US women to have an abortion and autonomy over their own bodies. 

The ruling means that in many US states, abortion immediately became illegal; others will soon follow suit (there are some, like California and New York, that have protected these rights). It will not prevent abortions, but will prevent safe abortions for many women. It rolls back the reproductive rights hard fought for by feminists since the 1970s.

The court ruled 6-3, with liberal Justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor issuing a powerful joint dissent (their full dissent is 66 pages; it’s worth reading if you want to feel further heartbroken and enraged).⁠

In it, they wrote: "Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of today's decision is certain: the curtailment of women's rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens.

“After today, young women will come of age with fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers had.

“With sorrow – for this court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection – we dissent.”

Some conservative justices, including Brett Kavanaugh, had said in earlier testimony that Roe v. Wade was settled legal precedent, which this ruling obviously contradicts entirely.

It is easy for some to dismiss this as a far away problem in the United States, distant from our own law and politics.

National party leader Christopher Luxon, who in an interview with Newshub in 2021 said he is pro-life and agreed that abortion is tantamount to murder, wrote on Twitter following the ruling that “Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us”. 

He added that abortion “laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government”. However in May, RNZ reported the party’s Dr Shane Reti as saying he would not rule out narrowing access and that it would be up to the National caucus: "That would always be a decision for caucus, and so I'm not going to offer a position here now, but we are mindful in watching what happens with Roe vs Wade".

It is true that New Zealand law and politics are vastly different to the US. But abortion was only decriminalised - that is, classified as a health matter rather than criminal - here in 2020. And Roe v. Wade has long been a global symbol of women’s and reproductive rights, and the power of the courts in protecting those rights.

This ruling in the US shows how fragile these assumed longtime protections can be.

It’s important to know where our political leaders stand on these issues, especially as we approach what is almost certainly going to be a tumultuous election campaign in 2023.

Here are some responses, both official and on social media, to this weekend’s heartbreaking news from New Zealand politicians - and how they voted in regards to Aotearoa’s most recent abortion legislation.

Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister, Labour

“Watching the removal of a woman’s fundamental right to make decisions over her own body is incredibly upsetting.

“Here in New Zealand we recently legislated to decriminalise abortion and treat it as a health rather than criminal issue. That change was grounded in the fundamental belief that it’s a woman’s right to choose.

“People are absolutely entitled to have deeply held convictions on this issue. But those personal beliefs should never rob another from making their own decisions. To see that principle now lost in the United States feels like a loss for women everywhere.

“When there are so many issues to tackle, so many challenges that face women and girls, we need progress, not to fight the same fights and move backwards.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Christopher Luxon, leader of the opposition, National

“The complete removal of abortion law in the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the USA is distressing for many women everywhere and I empathise with them.

"Our situation in New Zealand is very different from that occurring in the USA. New Zealand’s abortion laws were debated in detail, voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament during 2019-2020.

"I have been consistent since becoming leader that these laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National Government, and these health services will remain fully funded.

"I understand how deeply held people’s views on abortion are. It’s important to me that women in New Zealand have certainty that if I am elected Prime Minister these issues will not be put back on the table for further debate.

"Simon O’Connor’s post was taken down because it was causing distress and does not represent the position of the National Party."

“Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us. NZ’s abortion laws were voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament. These laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

David Seymour, ACT leader

“What’s happening, Twitter? Great question. It may be that this is just returning the question to a State one, but half the States are going back a century in just a few days.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Labour

“The US Supreme Courts overturning of Roe v. Wade Is draconian and does not support the right of women to choice. How can this happen?”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Grant Robertson, Deputy Prime Minister, Labour

"Such a distressing day even if we knew it was coming. I am thinking of, and standing with all those who will be hurt, harmed or affected by this dreadful decision.  I am pleased we made the progress we did last term, but what has happened in the USA reminds us all that we must be vigilant to protect the hard won gains".

"The world feels as volatile, scary and uncertain as it has for many decades right now.  After two years of stress and anxiety from the pandemic, the forces of hate and bigotry seem to be on the rise.  

At one level I feel like I don't want to overstate or amplify them. Its just a small minority right?   Most people want women to have the right to choose, don't they? It was a lone gunman overnight in Oslo as the city prepared for its pride parade who went on a rampage at gay bar killing two and injuring others, wasn't it?  The anti vax guy in a public meeting last week who yelled at me that he was going to "f*cking get you, you homo c*nt",  he is not representative of a great movement is he?

The answer does not matter.  The response does.  As we view with horror the decision by the US Supreme Court to take away reproductive choice from millions of women, as we hear about another hate motivated crime against the gay community, or attempts to marginalise the trans community our response must be one to stand together and support and protect each other.

We simply have to stand up, organise and make sure rights are not just protected but enhanced.  If you see bigotry and racism call it out, even if it is not directed at you.  If you know someone is dangerous or is saying things that are threatening, don't let it slide by, report it.  And make sure that the people you elect will uphold the values of inclusion, equality and equity.

I continue to believe that Aotearoa New Zealand can lead the way. I felt so proud of us on Friday during the Matariki celebrations.  I know that New Zealanders are for the most part fair minded and generous.  Let's hold tight to that.  Kia kaha."

(Later speaking to AM's Melissa Chan-Green)

"I think it's incredibly distressing for women in America and indeed around the world. Fifty years of what people thought was a settled situation about access to reproductive rights turned over overnight and I can absolutely understand the distress that has caused people not just in the US but also here in New Zealand.

"I think New Zealanders need to ask themselves what Christopher Luxon's stance on abortion actually is, he managed to put out two statements in two days over the weekend and previously he's said that abortion is akin to murder.

"New Zealanders know where Jacinda Ardern and Labour stand on this, we decriminalised abortion, we put it into a health setting and while Mr Luxon might be saying convenient political things now, I think people know where he really stands and obviously people will judge on what he says as well as his actions.

"Does that mean he will make sure that all National members don't bring forward a private members bill? Would he make sure that it wasn't part of the coalition? The issue for Christopher Luxon here is he said what he believes about abortion and now he's spinning to tell New Zealanders a different story.

"We've been consistent, we passed the law. My view is that it is important for New Zealand women to know that it is settled. We have Simon O'Connor, we have Simeon Brown, we have other National MPs saying what they've said. Chris Luxon is in overdrive spinning against that but we know what he himself believes."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Simon O’Connor, National MP for Tamaki

On Saturday morning the National MP shared a post on Facebook and an Instagram Story, writing “today is a good day", which was interpreted as a comment on the ruling. He later deleted the post, after being asked by his party to remove it.

On Tuesday O'Connor commented further, with Stuff reporting:

“I am clearly pro-life, there is no secret in that, but the spiralling distress and again the nature of the comments and the vitriol between individuals, I no longer wanted to be facilitating that by having such a post-up,” O’Connor said at Parliament on Tuesday.

O’Connor said National MPs were not “gagged” on the issue, and it is still possible for an MP to put forward a member’s bill on abortion. However, he had no intention of doing so.

“The caucus has made a very clear statement that national will not be revisiting abortion law in the future government,” he said.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against. When it passed, O’Connor spoke and quoted a bible verse: “Mihi vindicta: ego retribuam dicit Dominus” which roughly translates to: “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): Against.

Jan Tinetti, Minister for Women, Labour

"As Minister for Women I am, like so many, upset and angered by the removal of rights for many women in the USA. It is a reminder that we must protect & cherish the rights we have fought and won."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Sarah Pallett, Labour MP for Ilam

“Roe v Wade overturned. This will not prevent abortions, it prevents SAFE abortions. This is horrifying news and must be challenged.”

"The legislation that depends on Roe is now at risk. Legislation protecting access to contraception, same sex marriage … and it’s already being challenged. This is a globally concerning issue."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Green Party 

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

Jan Logie, Green Party

The US Supreme Court’s decision on abortion is a reminder that we must take nothing for granted in Aotearoa, the Green Party says. 

“Aotearoa should be a place where everyone, no matter where they are from, or who they love, can choose what is right for their body and their future. We cannot let the Supreme Court decision embolden those who do not share these values and want to limit access to abortion,” says Green MP Jan Logie.  

“New Zealand took a big step forward in 2020 when Parliament finally voted to decriminalise abortion. But the vote was too close to leave anything for granted. The fallout from the Supreme Court’s heart-breaking decision will reverberate around the world. Now more than ever we must remain alert to those in New Zealand who still want to control a person’s right to choose.

“Abortion is a healthcare issue, plain and simple. But it doesn’t end there. For people to be able to make a genuine choice about whether to be or stay pregnant, we must also make sure they have everything they need to be able to provide for themselves and their families, put a roof over their heads, and food on the table. 

“Rent controls, liveable incomes, free public transport, action to reduce basic costs like food and energy, affordable access to healthcare, limiting secret political donations - these are all steps on the path to a fairer, equitable future where everyone has the right to reproductive freedom. 

“People are allowed to feel angry or scared at what has happened in the United States. We cannot let it deter us from the work we have ahead to protect and improve access to safe and affordable abortion care in Aotearoa. 

“There is still so much to do to create the fairer, more equitable Aotearoa we all deserve - and a strong Green voice in Government and Parliament can help make it happen,” says Jan Logie.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Chlöe Swarbrick, Green Party MP for Auckland Central

"Prohibiting abortions doesn’t stop abortions. It prevents safe, regulated abortions. It prevents access for those without the resources to travel to areas where abortion is legal. 

"Solidarity with Americans fighting for restoration of their rights to healthcare."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For. 

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For. 

Golriz Ghahraman, Green Party

"So heart broken for America. If bodily autonomy of the most marginalised is at stake every hard-fought right is. We need to remember how they got there: big money lobbies rule American politicians. Limiting secret big $ donations is urgent for our democracy #AbortionIsHealthcare"

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

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How our political leaders responded to Roe v. Wade being overturned

The US Supreme Court Building in Washington, DC. Photo / AP Photo, J. Scott Applewhite

Editor's note: This story has been updated as politicians respond

Roe v. Wade was officially overturned by the US Supreme Court this weekend, stripping the rights of US women to have an abortion and autonomy over their own bodies. 

The ruling means that in many US states, abortion immediately became illegal; others will soon follow suit (there are some, like California and New York, that have protected these rights). It will not prevent abortions, but will prevent safe abortions for many women. It rolls back the reproductive rights hard fought for by feminists since the 1970s.

The court ruled 6-3, with liberal Justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor issuing a powerful joint dissent (their full dissent is 66 pages; it’s worth reading if you want to feel further heartbroken and enraged).⁠

In it, they wrote: "Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of today's decision is certain: the curtailment of women's rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens.

“After today, young women will come of age with fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers had.

“With sorrow – for this court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection – we dissent.”

Some conservative justices, including Brett Kavanaugh, had said in earlier testimony that Roe v. Wade was settled legal precedent, which this ruling obviously contradicts entirely.

It is easy for some to dismiss this as a far away problem in the United States, distant from our own law and politics.

National party leader Christopher Luxon, who in an interview with Newshub in 2021 said he is pro-life and agreed that abortion is tantamount to murder, wrote on Twitter following the ruling that “Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us”. 

He added that abortion “laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government”. However in May, RNZ reported the party’s Dr Shane Reti as saying he would not rule out narrowing access and that it would be up to the National caucus: "That would always be a decision for caucus, and so I'm not going to offer a position here now, but we are mindful in watching what happens with Roe vs Wade".

It is true that New Zealand law and politics are vastly different to the US. But abortion was only decriminalised - that is, classified as a health matter rather than criminal - here in 2020. And Roe v. Wade has long been a global symbol of women’s and reproductive rights, and the power of the courts in protecting those rights.

This ruling in the US shows how fragile these assumed longtime protections can be.

It’s important to know where our political leaders stand on these issues, especially as we approach what is almost certainly going to be a tumultuous election campaign in 2023.

Here are some responses, both official and on social media, to this weekend’s heartbreaking news from New Zealand politicians - and how they voted in regards to Aotearoa’s most recent abortion legislation.

Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister, Labour

“Watching the removal of a woman’s fundamental right to make decisions over her own body is incredibly upsetting.

“Here in New Zealand we recently legislated to decriminalise abortion and treat it as a health rather than criminal issue. That change was grounded in the fundamental belief that it’s a woman’s right to choose.

“People are absolutely entitled to have deeply held convictions on this issue. But those personal beliefs should never rob another from making their own decisions. To see that principle now lost in the United States feels like a loss for women everywhere.

“When there are so many issues to tackle, so many challenges that face women and girls, we need progress, not to fight the same fights and move backwards.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Christopher Luxon, leader of the opposition, National

“The complete removal of abortion law in the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the USA is distressing for many women everywhere and I empathise with them.

"Our situation in New Zealand is very different from that occurring in the USA. New Zealand’s abortion laws were debated in detail, voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament during 2019-2020.

"I have been consistent since becoming leader that these laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National Government, and these health services will remain fully funded.

"I understand how deeply held people’s views on abortion are. It’s important to me that women in New Zealand have certainty that if I am elected Prime Minister these issues will not be put back on the table for further debate.

"Simon O’Connor’s post was taken down because it was causing distress and does not represent the position of the National Party."

“Roe v Wade is an issue for the American people who have a different set of constitutional arrangements than us. NZ’s abortion laws were voted on and ultimately settled in the last parliament. These laws will not be relitigated or revisited under a future National government.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

David Seymour, ACT leader

“What’s happening, Twitter? Great question. It may be that this is just returning the question to a State one, but half the States are going back a century in just a few days.”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Labour

“The US Supreme Courts overturning of Roe v. Wade Is draconian and does not support the right of women to choice. How can this happen?”

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Grant Robertson, Deputy Prime Minister, Labour

"Such a distressing day even if we knew it was coming. I am thinking of, and standing with all those who will be hurt, harmed or affected by this dreadful decision.  I am pleased we made the progress we did last term, but what has happened in the USA reminds us all that we must be vigilant to protect the hard won gains".

"The world feels as volatile, scary and uncertain as it has for many decades right now.  After two years of stress and anxiety from the pandemic, the forces of hate and bigotry seem to be on the rise.  

At one level I feel like I don't want to overstate or amplify them. Its just a small minority right?   Most people want women to have the right to choose, don't they? It was a lone gunman overnight in Oslo as the city prepared for its pride parade who went on a rampage at gay bar killing two and injuring others, wasn't it?  The anti vax guy in a public meeting last week who yelled at me that he was going to "f*cking get you, you homo c*nt",  he is not representative of a great movement is he?

The answer does not matter.  The response does.  As we view with horror the decision by the US Supreme Court to take away reproductive choice from millions of women, as we hear about another hate motivated crime against the gay community, or attempts to marginalise the trans community our response must be one to stand together and support and protect each other.

We simply have to stand up, organise and make sure rights are not just protected but enhanced.  If you see bigotry and racism call it out, even if it is not directed at you.  If you know someone is dangerous or is saying things that are threatening, don't let it slide by, report it.  And make sure that the people you elect will uphold the values of inclusion, equality and equity.

I continue to believe that Aotearoa New Zealand can lead the way. I felt so proud of us on Friday during the Matariki celebrations.  I know that New Zealanders are for the most part fair minded and generous.  Let's hold tight to that.  Kia kaha."

(Later speaking to AM's Melissa Chan-Green)

"I think it's incredibly distressing for women in America and indeed around the world. Fifty years of what people thought was a settled situation about access to reproductive rights turned over overnight and I can absolutely understand the distress that has caused people not just in the US but also here in New Zealand.

"I think New Zealanders need to ask themselves what Christopher Luxon's stance on abortion actually is, he managed to put out two statements in two days over the weekend and previously he's said that abortion is akin to murder.

"New Zealanders know where Jacinda Ardern and Labour stand on this, we decriminalised abortion, we put it into a health setting and while Mr Luxon might be saying convenient political things now, I think people know where he really stands and obviously people will judge on what he says as well as his actions.

"Does that mean he will make sure that all National members don't bring forward a private members bill? Would he make sure that it wasn't part of the coalition? The issue for Christopher Luxon here is he said what he believes about abortion and now he's spinning to tell New Zealanders a different story.

"We've been consistent, we passed the law. My view is that it is important for New Zealand women to know that it is settled. We have Simon O'Connor, we have Simeon Brown, we have other National MPs saying what they've said. Chris Luxon is in overdrive spinning against that but we know what he himself believes."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Simon O’Connor, National MP for Tamaki

On Saturday morning the National MP shared a post on Facebook and an Instagram Story, writing “today is a good day", which was interpreted as a comment on the ruling. He later deleted the post, after being asked by his party to remove it.

On Tuesday O'Connor commented further, with Stuff reporting:

“I am clearly pro-life, there is no secret in that, but the spiralling distress and again the nature of the comments and the vitriol between individuals, I no longer wanted to be facilitating that by having such a post-up,” O’Connor said at Parliament on Tuesday.

O’Connor said National MPs were not “gagged” on the issue, and it is still possible for an MP to put forward a member’s bill on abortion. However, he had no intention of doing so.

“The caucus has made a very clear statement that national will not be revisiting abortion law in the future government,” he said.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Against. When it passed, O’Connor spoke and quoted a bible verse: “Mihi vindicta: ego retribuam dicit Dominus” which roughly translates to: “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): Against.

Jan Tinetti, Minister for Women, Labour

"As Minister for Women I am, like so many, upset and angered by the removal of rights for many women in the USA. It is a reminder that we must protect & cherish the rights we have fought and won."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Sarah Pallett, Labour MP for Ilam

“Roe v Wade overturned. This will not prevent abortions, it prevents SAFE abortions. This is horrifying news and must be challenged.”

"The legislation that depends on Roe is now at risk. Legislation protecting access to contraception, same sex marriage … and it’s already being challenged. This is a globally concerning issue."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): Not in parliament at the time.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Green Party 

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): All party members voted for.

Jan Logie, Green Party

The US Supreme Court’s decision on abortion is a reminder that we must take nothing for granted in Aotearoa, the Green Party says. 

“Aotearoa should be a place where everyone, no matter where they are from, or who they love, can choose what is right for their body and their future. We cannot let the Supreme Court decision embolden those who do not share these values and want to limit access to abortion,” says Green MP Jan Logie.  

“New Zealand took a big step forward in 2020 when Parliament finally voted to decriminalise abortion. But the vote was too close to leave anything for granted. The fallout from the Supreme Court’s heart-breaking decision will reverberate around the world. Now more than ever we must remain alert to those in New Zealand who still want to control a person’s right to choose.

“Abortion is a healthcare issue, plain and simple. But it doesn’t end there. For people to be able to make a genuine choice about whether to be or stay pregnant, we must also make sure they have everything they need to be able to provide for themselves and their families, put a roof over their heads, and food on the table. 

“Rent controls, liveable incomes, free public transport, action to reduce basic costs like food and energy, affordable access to healthcare, limiting secret political donations - these are all steps on the path to a fairer, equitable future where everyone has the right to reproductive freedom. 

“People are allowed to feel angry or scared at what has happened in the United States. We cannot let it deter us from the work we have ahead to protect and improve access to safe and affordable abortion care in Aotearoa. 

“There is still so much to do to create the fairer, more equitable Aotearoa we all deserve - and a strong Green voice in Government and Parliament can help make it happen,” says Jan Logie.

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Chlöe Swarbrick, Green Party MP for Auckland Central

"Prohibiting abortions doesn’t stop abortions. It prevents safe, regulated abortions. It prevents access for those without the resources to travel to areas where abortion is legal. 

"Solidarity with Americans fighting for restoration of their rights to healthcare."

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For. 

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For. 

Golriz Ghahraman, Green Party

"So heart broken for America. If bodily autonomy of the most marginalised is at stake every hard-fought right is. We need to remember how they got there: big money lobbies rule American politicians. Limiting secret big $ donations is urgent for our democracy #AbortionIsHealthcare"

How they voted in the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 (third and final reading): For.

How they voted in the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Safe Areas) Amendment Act 2022 (third and final reading): For.

Creativity, evocative visual storytelling and good journalism come at a price. Support our work and join the Ensemble membership program
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