In a recent poll, WhatsUpNewp readers overwhelmingly showed their support for proposed legislation that would make Roe v. Wade, which upholds a woman’s constitutional right to abortion, the law in Rhode Island, even if overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court.

More than 84 percent of the nearly 400 readers responding to the poll, voted yes to the question: “Are you in favor of the bill introduced in the Rhode Island legislature, that would make Roe v. Wade the law in Rhode Island, assuring the legalization of abortion in Rhode Island.”

The bill, which has been introduced in the past, has a much better chance of success because of the election of a number of pro-choice legislators, according to the bill’s main sponsor, Rep. Edith Ajello, D-Providence.

Even if it has the support of a majority of legislators, it first needs to win favor with Speaker of the House Nicholas Mattiello, who controls whether it ever reaches the floor of the House of Representatives. According to published reports, it’s unclear whether Mattiello or Senate President M. Teresa Paiva-Weed, both Catholics, will support the bill.

With President Donald Trump’s nomination of Neil Gorsuch, a conservative jurist who is seen as likely supporting appeal of Roe v. Wade, Ajello has said she feels a sense of urgency to pass the bill, titled the “Reproductive Health Care Act.” She had more than 30 co-sponsors to the bill.

Meanwhile, nationwide there has been a flood of anti-abortion bills introduced in legislatures from Texas to New Jersey, nearly 50 bills total. In Minnesota alone, 15 anti-abortion have been introduced. And last year, 18 states enacted 50 new abortion restrictions.

Internationally, the United States is one of 60 countries “that provide legal access to safe abortions,” according to a report on CNN.

Frank Prosnitz

Frank Prosnitz brings to WhatsUpNewp several years in journalism, including 10 as editor of the Providence (RI) Business News and 14 years as a reporter and bureau manager at the Providence (RI) Journal. Prosnitz began his journalism career as a sportswriter at the Asbury Park (NJ) Press, moving to The News Tribune (Woodbridge, NJ), before joining the Providence Journal. Prosnitz hosts the Morning Show on WLBQ radio (Westerly), 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday, and It’s Your Business, also on WBLQ, Monday and Tuesday, 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Prosnitz has twice won Best in Business Awards from the national Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW), twice was named Media Advocate of the Year by the Small Business Administration, won an investigative reporter’s award from the New England Press Association, and newswriting award from the Rhode Island Press Association.