Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt and the state’s attorney general, John O’Connor, held a press conference on Friday, June 24, to celebrate their swift ban on abortion in Oklahoma following the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v Wade.
In April, Gov Stitt signed a so-called “trigger law” which, once Roe v Wade was overturned, was certified by O’Connor, thereby introducing an immediate ban on abortions in Oklahoma, except in cases where the parent’s life is in danger.
“When I ran for governor, I promised Oklahomans that I would sign every piece of pro-life legislation that hit my desk, and I am thrilled to have kept that promise," Stitt told media at the Oklahoma State Capitol.
The governor lauded O’Connor, whom he said had been “fighting this fight” against abortion rights “for his entire career.”
O’Connor said abortion was now illegal in Oklahoma “from the point of conception,” and urged other states to follow their lead.
“The womb is now, in Oklahoma, the safest place for a child to be,” O’Connor said. Credit: Gov. Kevin Stitt via Storyful
GOVERNOR KEVIN STITT: I especially wanna thank Attorney General John O'Connor. John O'Connor has truly been fighting this fight for his entire career. When the 6-3 decision was handed down today, John O'Connor wasted no time. His swift action to certify section 861 banned abortion in our state immediately. It is my hope that the rest of America will follow Oklahoma's lead.
JOHN O'CONNOR: As you know, since the 1973 "Roe vs. Wade" decision, over 60 million American children have not seen the light of day. That makes this Supreme Court decision the most life-saving decision in the history of our nation. The decision over abortion or pro-life policies will be made at the state level. This decision does not ban abortion in the United States. It leaves it to every state to decide whether abortion will be in-- illegal in that state.
And the people of Oklahoma have decided, through their elected leaders, and the governor signed legislation making abortion illegal in the state of Oklahoma from the moment of conception, except in the instance of-- to saving the life of the mother. And remember that, in the Oklahoma law, this-- there is no punishment for the mother. There is no criminal punishment. There is no civil exposure for the mother. It's for the people who aid or abet or solicit abortion.
Oklahoma is indeed the most pro-life state in the nation. And we hope that other states will follow our lead and that other states, like Oklahoma, will take care of women who are in a crisis pregnancy, that we as a state, as social services agencies, as good neighbors, as-- as church members will make provision for the medical, the physical, the emotional needs of the woman in a crisis pregnancy and her child.
And we hope that the rest of the nation takes that as a message that makes sense. The answer to a crisis pregnancy is to care for the mother and to care for the baby in the womb. The womb is now, in Oklahoma, the safest place for a child to be. So with that, we'll turn it I guess-- mister-- or, Governor, I'll turn it back to you. Or we'll take questions.