US: California attorney general warns town against abortion ban

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A city in California is considering legislation that would ban abortions within the city. In response, California Attorney General Rob Bonta warned Temecula's city council not to pass such legislation, threatening legal action if it attempts to go above state law.

In a letter sent Friday to the city's mayor and council, Bonta emphasized that local laws cannot conflict with state laws.

"The California Legislature and the California Supreme Court have declared time and again that California is a reproductive freedom state and that Californians have a right to access abortion," the letter said.

Earlier this month, during a Temecula City Council meeting, member Jessica Alexander proposed the creation of a resolution barring abortions.

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"Let Temecula be known as a safe haven, not as an abortion sanctuary," she said. "Let the world know that Temecula stands for life from womb to tomb."

Bonta warned Friday that the city cannot "limit an individual's ability to exercise their right to reproductive choice and bodily autonomy."

"Our office will not hesitate to take legal action should a local regulation conflict with California state law," Bonta added.

A billboard advertising abortion services in California popped up on Gervais Street in Columbia, South Carolina, recently. The ad was paid for by California Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. / Credit: A billboard advertising abortion services in California © Provided by CBS News A billboard advertising abortion services in California popped up on Gervais Street in Columbia, South Carolina, recently. The ad was paid for by California Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. / Credit: A billboard advertising abortion services in California

Alexander's proposed legislation would seemingly go directly against state law. On Tuesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed 13 new abortion protection and reproductive health bills.

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According to a press release from the governor, the bills cover a variety of reproductive measures, including protecting out-of-state abortion-seekers from legal prosecution and expanding access to both birth control and health care providers.

"We're doing everything we can to protect people from any retaliation for accessing abortion care while also making it more affordable to get contraceptives," Newsom said.

"Our Legislature has been on the frontlines of this fight, and no other legislative body in the country is doing more to protect these fundamental rights – I'm proud to stand with them again and sign these critical bills into law," he added.

In November, California will vote on Proposition 1, which would protect abortion and access to contraception as constitutional rights in the state.

A similar anti-abortion resolution was proposed in San Clemente last month by city councilman Steve Knoblock, CBS Los Angeles reported. But after public outcry, the council voted 3 to 1 to remove the resolution from a city council meeting agenda.

Alexander's proposal was scheduled to be a subject at Tuesday's city council meeting.

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