AG Ferguson seeks protection for out-of-state abortion providers

UPDATED: MAY 22, 2022 AT 8:59 AM
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Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson on Monday sent a letter to medical commissions and boards asking to not disqualify out-of-state abortion providers from obtaining a license to practice medicine in the event that they’re penalized if Roe v. Wade is overturned.

“There’s some irony coming from Bob Ferguson, who constantly complained about how Donald Trump breaks the law, doesn’t regard the law, which in large was just nonsense talking points,” AM 770 KTTH’s Jason Rantz said.

“But now he’s saying we should disregard the laws of other states.”

Ferguson directed his petition toward the Washington Medical Commission, the Washington Board of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery and the Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission, all of which have the power to provide licenses for medical providers throughout the state.

He released in the statement, “if the United States Supreme Court eliminates the federal right to abortion and reproductive care, medical providers who come to Washington to practice should not be penalized for providing this essential care that is legal in Washington,” Ferguson said.

But with perseverance often comes challenges or opposition.

“We don’t know what happened in each of those cases, so to have like a blanket approach to just saying ‘hey, you broke the law in your state, come on over to ours, and we’ll just ignore all of that,” State Representative Republican Michelle Caldier told Rantz. “That’s insane to me.”

In the letter, the board was asked to issue clear guidance for the public and providers indicating they won’t take action for services legal and protected in the state but criminalized in other states.

“I do not want providers into our state that have not only performed things illegally, but also more than likely than not have had complications with those procedures. I think that’s wrong.”

Despite uncertainties, Caldier said she doesn’t expect to see a big change anytime soon.

“In the event that Roe v. Wade gets overturned, Washington state will stay the same … I seriously doubt that that will change in the near future, and I think Democrats know that.”