Rhode Island State House

Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea, a gubernatorial candidate, and Congressional candidate David Segal, expressed outrage after reports of a leaked draft of a U.S. Supreme Court initial decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Both statements were released before a rally at the State House tonight at 8. The reaction from Segal and Gorbea were consistent with responses around the country to bothhe  the substance of the draft, and the fact it was leaked.

Gorbea Statement

Secretary Nellie Gorbea issued the following statement after a leaked draft of the U.S. Supreme Court’s initial majority opinion for Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization revealed a decision to strike down fifty years of precedent by overturning the landmark Roe v. Wade decision.

“Access to abortion is a fundamental right. I’m proud that here in Rhode Island we’ve worked together to protect that right. Make no mistake: abortion is on the ballot this election. I am the only candidate in this field who has worked my entire life and career to stand up against Republican attacks, fighting for the rights and freedoms of people and their families. As Governor I will do everything in my power to ensure that Rhode Islanders will continue to have access to safe and legal abortions.”

Gorbea said she will discuss “the critical need to elect pro-choice candidates up and down the ballot; how improving access to the ballot allows for more election participation, which results in a more diverse group of elected officials; and the importance of passing the Rhode Island Equity in Abortion Coverage ACT.” 

Segal Statement

“Yesterday, we were all shaken and saddened to hear the news that the Supreme Court is poised to overturn Roe v Wade — the bedrock of reproductive freedom in our country for nearly five decades.

“We are appalled, angry, and scared. Even for those who expected this would happen, the reality of its imminence underscores the urgent need to protect reproductive freedom, abortion rights, and any other rights that might be threatened by the forthcoming decision…

“I won’t sugarcoat this. If the eventual ruling issued is similar to the draft leaked yesterday, there will be devastating consequences. Thankfully less so here, at least in the near term, but this will be a painful moment in our nation’s history.

“What must we do?”

  • “Make sure Rhode Island’s laws continue to fully protect full reproductive freedom.” 
  • “We must act beyond the borders” and “support efforts across the country to help those organizing in other states to pass similar laws and protections.”
  • “In the longer term, we will need to have a strategy to address the systemic issues with our democratic system, including the courts, to reverse this ruling and focus on expanding not restricting rights. Not just on this issue but on all that enshrine rights we ought to take for granted.”
  • “In the long term, we need to do a better job building strong coalitions…We need to win elections because we are genuinely offering the kind of leadership that will not forget that needs to be the purpose of government.”

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.