Fractured follows state legislators from across the country as they fight to defend abortion rights and expand access for all Americans after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.
After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, eliminating the right to abortion care for millions of Americans, state legislators from all 50 states in support of reproductive freedom sprung into action to defend bodily autonomy.
After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, eliminating the right to have an abortion for millions of Americans, state legislators from all 50 states in support of reproductive freedom sprung into action to defend bodily autonomy, fighting on the frontlines against harmful restrictions and to strengthen access for all Americans.
The State Innovation Exchange’s Reproductive Freedom Leadership Council — the largest network of state legislators working to protect and expand abortion rights — chronicled these battles in statehouses across the country in this five-part, first-of-its-kind docuseries.
Filmed over the course of the 2023 legislative session, the series features intimate interviews and behind-the-scenes access, taking viewers on a journey across 10 states as America’s political and cultural divide continues to widen.
Additionally, this series includes the stories of Christian, Jewish and Hindu faith leaders who reject the notion that faith and abortion rights are at odds, as well as providers and voters who want to keep their rights in place.
Senator Erin Maye Quade represents District 56 in Minnesota, having previously served in the state’s House of Representatives. Throughout the 2023 legislative session, Sen. Maye Quade has been a fierce champion of reproductive justice, fighting to successfully codify abortion access into state law, protect out-of-state patients, and increase funding so that more Minnesotans have access to the full range of reproductive health care. She was the principal author of the recently enacted Reproductive Freedom Codification Act, which repealed several abortion restrictions deemed unconstitutional in three separate Minnesota court cases. Outside of elected office, Sen. Maye Quade holds leadership roles at Gender Justice and the UnRestrict Minnesota coalition — two of the most impactful reproductive justice organizations in the state.
Karla Rose Hanson represents District 44 in the North Dakota House of Representatives, where she has served since 2016. As a member of the North Dakota Legislature’s superminority, Rep. Hanson works tirelessly to draw attention to the wave of anti-abortion bills that have flooded the statehouse over the past several years. She was instrumental in building public opposition to North Dakota’s near-total abortion ban, which was recently blocked by the state Supreme Court. Rep. Hanson’s district in Fargo used to be the site of North Dakota’s sole abortion clinic before it was forced to relocate across the border to Minnesota once the state’s trigger law took effect in the immediate aftermath of Dobbs v. Jackson.
Donna Howard represents District 48 in the Texas House of Representatives, where she has served since 2006, and was elected by her colleagues in 2020 to be Chair of the Texas House Women’s Health Caucus. As a legislator from TX, Rep. Howard has been at the forefront of this current abortion battle, from witnessing SB8 become essentially the first statewide abortion ban to take effect post-Roe to seeing just how far conservative legislators are willing to go to stigmatize and criminalize abortion post-Dobbs. In the 2023 legislative session, Rep. Howard has worked to weaken the state’s abortion restrictions and increase funding for children’s and women’s health services.
Rep. Micaela Lara Cadena represents District 33 in the New Mexico House of Representatives, where she has served since 2019. Rep Lara Cadena is proud that over decades, New Mexico has been a place where people come for the pregnancy related care they may need, including abortion without political restrictions. Micaela understands that New Mexicans overwhelmingly support abortion access because of our identities, and not in spite of them. The communities Micaela represents became the new home of the Pink House abortion clinic at the heart of the Dobbs v. Jackson Supreme Court case.
As a former Planned Parenthood patient and employee, Rep. Anna V. Eskamani represents District 42 in the Florida House of Representatives as an unapologetic advocate for reproductive freedom, where she has been in the eye of the storm since 2018 as conservatives have wielded their legislative trifecta to push through a slate of extreme abortion restrictions. Once a haven for abortion access in the South, Florida is now on the verge of losing access entirely with a recently-signed 6-week ban now in front of the state’s conservative Supreme Court. Rep. Eskamani uses her “delay, amend, and destroy” tactics to highlight how out of touch these efforts are with everyday Floridians. This year, she led Democratic efforts to file over 50 amendments against the declared "Forced Pregnancy Act," and is on the frontlines supporting a citizen-led initiative that would add abortion access to the ballot in 2024.
Sen. Natalie Murdock represents District 20 in North Carolina, where she has been outspoken in her work to promote Black maternal health in the state. She is the chief author of the Momnibus Act to address North Carolina’s Black maternal mortality crisis, and her efforts to expand access to health care in the state came to a head in 2023 when the Legislature passed a bipartisan Medicaid expansion bill. She was a also a primary sponsor of the RBG Act that would repeal harmful TRAP laws that make it difficult to access abortion care in North Carolina. While North Carolina has historically been a reproductive health haven in the Southeast, with legislators from both parties voting to successfully expand access to birth control just last year, changes in the legislative composition have put abortion at risk. Conservatives recently passed a 12-week ban — among a host of other restrictions — and reproductive freedom in North Carolina stands on shaky footing.
Sen. Kim Jackson, in addition to representing District 41 in Georgia, is an ordained Episcopal priest, who talks extensively about the need to protect abortion access with both her constituents and congregants. Sen. Jackson is acutely aware of how the issue of abortion has been warped by both politics and religion to implement control over people’s bodily autonomy, and she speaks out forcefully against attempts to limit the freedoms of Georgians. The state’s 6-week abortion ban is currently under review by the state Supreme Court.
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