“Today, nearly a week after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Rep. Judy Chu … attended a peaceful Planned Parenthood civil disobedience rally on Capitol grounds, where she was subsequently arrested alongside other activists,” according to her office.
Lacy Nelson, a spokeswoman for Chu, told City News Service the congresswoman was arrested by Capitol Police around 1 p.m. Washington time while sitting with other protesters in an intersection between the Russell Senate Office Building and the Supreme Court building. Chu was issued a citation and released about two hours later, the spokeswoman said.
“I am here to make sure every woman in every state of this country has the right to an abortion,” Chu — the principal sponsor of the Women’s Health Protection Act, which would enshrine Roe — said at the rally.
“We saw the devastating decision of the Supreme Court, and it’s already putting lives in danger.”
According to Nelson, with Congress in recess, Chu flew back to Washington specifically to participate in the rally, and was the only member of Congress to attend.
Chu posted video on Twitter showing her at the front of a group of marchers carrying a long green banner and singing, “We want justice, we want it now.”
Behind her, protesters carried signs with slogans such as “We won’t back down” and “Forced birth = more slavery.”
“You can count on me to never give up in this fight,” Chu tweeted. “I’m going to be marching and fighting with you ever step of the way.”
She also tweeted, “Proud to join activists and community leaders today to say loud and clear – we WON’T back down. We will NOT go back.”
In a statement released by her office, Chu went on to say, “When I first heard Roe was overturned, I immediately thought of who would be most harmed by this decision: a young girl who is a survivor of rape, a woman who cannot afford to travel to another state to access critical care, an expecting mother with an ectopic pregnancy whose life is in danger because she cannot have an abortion.
“So, when I think of all these women — and more — the decision to join in a peaceful demonstration to make clear we will not allow the clock to be rolled back on abortion rights was easy. We are in this together and we will not back down or be silenced.”
She added she will also spearhead legislative action to counter the Supreme Court’s decision.
“I am ramping up my calls to abolish the Senate filibuster — and actively exploring every option to ensure we pass my bill, the Women’s Health Protection Act, which establishes a federal right to abortion care, and have it signed into law. Lives are at stake and this fight is far from over,” she said.