Jill Biden

Remarks on the Anniversary of the Dobbs Decision - June 20, 2023

Jill Biden
June 20, 2023— Washington, D.C.
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First Lady Jill Biden delivered these remarks at the White House regarding the Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, which gave increased rights to states to limit and even outlaw abortion, in her introduction of several women who told their own stories of how the Dobbs decision affected them.

Thank you all for being here today. I really appreciate it.

Nearly one year ago, the Dobbs decision took away women’s constitutional rights—their ability to make their own health care decisions. Today, 18 states have abortion bans in effect. And the consequences of these bans go far beyond the right to choose.

Women are being denied access to medications that treat arthritis and cancer—even when they aren’t pregnant—and survivors of rape and incest are being forced to travel across state lines for care. Doctors have stopped providing the care that they know is best for their patients because they don’t know which procedures are legal.

And like those who are with us today, far, far too many women are experiencing devastating consequences to their health, their fertility, and their lives. Turned away from emergency rooms. Delayed treatments. Mourning loss, while barely surviving the resulting infections.

The Dobbs decision was devastating. And Joe is doing everything he can to fight back. But the only way we can ensure that every woman has the fundamental freedoms she deserves is for Congress to make the protections of Roe v. Wade the law of the land once again.

So, we’ve got to make our voices heard—for the women whose lives are on the line, and for the fathers and brothers, and husbands and sons, who love them. We need men in this fight, too, which I’m sure you’re probably all saying the same thing.

Today, we are joined by four women who are doing just that—speaking up about their experiences. I know that it isn’t easy to relive what you’ve been through. But stories like yours are how we shed light on the cruel and devastating consequences of these bans. So, I want to thank you all for your candor and your courage.

And now, we’re going to have a conversation led by Jen Klein, the Director of our Gender Policy Council, who has worked tirelessly on this issue.

I know I can already feel the emotion. Honestly, I just want to say thank you.

Forbes Breaking News. “Jill Biden Hosts Conversation On Impact Of The Dobbs Decision.” YouTube video, 20:36. June 24, 2023. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ubIoJLg-EM.

The White House. “First Lady Jill Biden Hosts a Conversation at the White House on the Impact of the Dobbs Decision.” YouTube video, 21:09. June 20, 2023. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6RXUET45Co.

The White House. 2023. “Remarks as Prepared for Delivery by First Lady Jill Biden at a Conversation with Women Ahead of the One Year Anniversary of the Dobbs Decision.” https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/speeches-remarks/2023/06/20/remarks-as-prepared-for-delivery-by-first-lady-jill-biden-at-a-conversation-with-women-ahead-of-the-one-year-anniversary-of-the-dobbs-decision.