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Planned Parenthood CEO: Clinics "fighting to get every single patient in that they can see" before states ban abortion

CBS News logo CBS News 6/25/2022 Erin Pflaumer
Women's March Foundation's National Day Of Action! The "Bans Off Our Bodies" Reproductive Rights Rally © / Getty Images Women's March Foundation's National Day Of Action! The "Bans Off Our Bodies" Reproductive Rights Rally

Following the Supreme Court's landmark decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, many across the U.S. are forced to prepare for abortion access being restricted — or banned — in their states. 

Planned Parenthood President and CEO Alexis McGill Johnson told "CBS Evening News" Anchor and Managing Editor Norah O'Donnell that clinics across the U.S. are trying to see as many patients as possible before states adopt laws that would force them to close. 

"Our affiliates, our health centers are fighting to get every single patient in that they can see right now before the state issues an injunction," McGill Johnson said. 

Thirteen states have so-called "trigger laws" in place, meaning abortion will swiftly be outlawed there in most cases. She said she expects hundreds of thousands of women to be denied abortion services in states that restrict or ban access.

"They won't be able to get the care in the state that they need," said McGill Johnson, who also highlighted the outsized impact the decision will have on people of color and people with low incomes. 

"Folks who already are living at the margins, those are going to be the people who are most harmed," she said. 

In the majority opinion, Justice Samuel Alito wrote that the ruling won't affect contraceptive rights, arguing that abortion rights are different from rights regarding "contraception and same-sex relationships." 

McGill Johnson said she isn't convinced. "We see state after state introducing incredibly extreme and harmful legislation related to criminalizing IVF, criminalizing IUDS, criminalizing emergency contraception," she said. 

She said she's already seeing some state legislatures introducing laws that would criminalize traveling to another state to get an abortion.

"We are seeing, you know, people spying on each other, neighbors spying on each other, all for... to deny people the right to make decisions about their own bodies," McGill Johnson said. "And so the increased criminalization that can happen — I'm not sure how they will enforce these kinds of laws, but these are the kinds of things that are being contemplated, and we have to be very alarmed about them."

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