PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — In separate press conferences on Saturday, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden both vowed to protect privacy laws in the wake of the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
On Friday Inslee and the other West Coast governors, Oregon’s Kate Brown and California’s Gavin Newsom, launched a multi-state commitment to reproductive freedom, a “West Coast Offense” to protect abortion access.
At a Saturday press conference, Inslee said Washington legislators are already working to change the state constitution to solidify the right of choice, direct the Washington State Patrol to refuse to work with investigations related to abortion that come from agencies in states that don’t allow abortion, and give $1 million in emergency funds to reproductive care clinics along with increased protection and safeguards of patient data.
“We are going to be very alert to plug any gaps in our privacy laws so that no one can expose the private information from a Washington citizen, or a citizen of a different state that comes here for services,” Inslee said. “We are not going to let that data go back to Texas, Missouri or Idaho.”
‘Women going to have personal data weaponized against them’
Wyden talked about what he intends to do on a federal level to help protect women’s privacy.
“This morning, a lot of Oregonians are waking up hearing about Roe v Wade and they’re (relieved) that ‘at least we’re protected,'” Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden said at a separate press conference on Saturday. “But let me read you what former Vice President Mike Pence — who is apparently a candidate for 2024 — said. ‘We are not going to rest until we pass a nationwide ban’ — his words –‘We won’t rest until abortion is outlawed everywhere.’
“Well, I have a message for Mike Pence this morning, a message from Oregon,” Wyden continued. “We’re not going to rest, either. We understand that that’s really what their long term game plan is. Republican senators are saying it to the newspapers. That’s what this is really all about.”
Wyden vowed he and others will be working in communities, legislatures, in Congress and the courts “pressing every step of the way.”
He also said the wording in the majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito will mean “that women are going to have their personal data weaponized against them.” He vowed to make sure women have access to reproductive services through available means, including the Affordable Care Act.
“I’m going to legislate restrictions to prevent them getting access to that kind of information,” Wyden said. “If (the biggest technology companies) allow their tools to persecute or prosecute women, they’re going to face real consequences.”