Democratic Rep. Judy Chu Arrested At Abortion Rights Protest Outside U.S. Capitol

The California congresswoman was one of 181 protesters arrested Thursday while calling for action to protect abortion rights.

Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) was arrested Thursday for participating in an abortion rights protest outside the U.S. Capitol in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.

Chu was among 181 people the Capitol Police arrested for “for blocking the intersection of Constitution Avenue, NE and First Street, NE,” which is also near the Supreme Court.

“When I think of all these women — and more — the decision to join in a peaceful demonstration to make clear we will not allow the clock to be rolled back on abortion rights was easy,” Chu said in a statement. “We are in this together and we will not back down or be silenced.”

U.S. Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) is detained by U.S. Capitol Police for participating in a protest outside the U.S. Supreme Court on the last day of their term on June 30, 2022 in Washington, DC.
U.S. Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) is detained by U.S. Capitol Police for participating in a protest outside the U.S. Supreme Court on the last day of their term on June 30, 2022 in Washington, DC.
Kevin Dietsch via Getty Images

The protest was organized by the Center for Popular Democracy Action and Planned Parenthood Action Fund, according to The Washington Post. It comes nearly a week after the high court delivered its verdict on the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a case centered around a Mississippi law banning abortion at 15 weeks.

The justices decided to overturn both Roe and a subsequent case, Planned Parenthood v. Casey, effectively taking away Americans’ constitutional right to an abortion.

Activists and Democratic lawmakers are pushing for other steps to protect abortion rights.

“Every major right we have in this country — voting or women’s rights — came about because of protests,” Chu told the Post in an interview. “That is what changed things in America for the better.”

Chu sponsored the Women’s Health Protection Act, which would codify access to abortion. While the bill cleared the House in September 2021, it failed in the Senate.

President Joe Biden on Thursday said he supports an “exception” to the filibuster for codifying Roe, which Democrats, including Chu, have been calling for.

“I believe we have to codify Roe v. Wade into law and the way to do that is to make sure Congress votes to do that,” Biden told reporters in Madrid, where he was attending a NATO summit.

“And if the filibuster gets in the way — it’s like voting rights — we should be requiring an exception to the filibuster for this action to deal with the Supreme Court decision,” Biden continued.

Meanwhile, the fight on abortion has moved to the states. A Florida judge on Thursday decided to block a controversial 15-week abortion ban, saying it “violates the privacy provision of the Florida constitution.”

Before You Go

Popular in the Community