AG: Washington will provide safe abortions for those out-of-state seeking care

The Supreme Court voted to overrule the landmark 1973 ruling of Roe. V. Wade. 

Now, the legality of abortions would be in the hands of each individual state.

Washington will remain a safe place for pregnant individuals here and out of state to get an abortion, state officials said. 

Washington's Attorney General, Bob Ferguson, like many has read the leaked draft of a Supreme Court Justice's decision.

"If it comes out the way it’s been drafted, it's not just deeply alarming, it's radical, it's extreme, it overturns decades of precedence," Ferguson said.

He says from a legal standpoint, it’s as extreme as it gets.

Ferguson says as a state, Washington will do everything in its power to protect pregnant individuals traveling from outside the state and providers from any civil or criminal liability from another state, like Texas, whose Governor Greg Abbott has said under SB8, he'd extradite providers who perform such medical procedures.

"I am very confident our governor is not going to extradite anyone to another state for exercising their right to a safe and legal abortion here in Washington state, that’s not going to happen," Ferguson said.  

As we wait for a final verdict from the Supreme Court, Ferguson says a team of about 20 people are already looking at the potential legal issues Washington, providers and patients outside the state could face from other states.

"The way we look at it is, if an event is happening here in Washington, they don’t have jurisdiction to criminalize someone or penalize someone from a civil standpoint here in Washington state," Ferguson said. "My job as Attorney General would be to make sure those individuals and providers are protected under the law."

Even if there's a legal battle, lawmakers say they will ensure both providers and patients are protected.

Now the issue locally is ensuring there are enough funds to help care for the influx of people seeking abortions in Washington.

According to Radical Women, an organization fighting for reproductive justice for over 50 years, says pregnant individuals are coming from Idaho, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and even Texas.

"The reasons matter to the individuals, but the reason shouldn't matter, ultimately, they shouldn't become a part of the broader discussion about why," Executive Director Gina Petry said. "We shouldn't have to say why we have to get one. It's our right to make these decisions about our bodies."

Andrea Bauer is 69 years old now, but she had an abortion in 1974 shortly after Roe v. Wade was passed.

"It was seen as a victory," Bauer said. "It was seen as a normal healthcare procedure. Abortion has to be an option."  

She was only about 21-years-old when she got pregnant while using a diaphragm.  

Bauer knew then she didn't want kids -- which has turned out to be true till this day.

FOX 13 asked her if having an abortion in that timeframe saved her life.  

Bauer said, "I think it saved the life I wanted to have."

She's now one of the many fighting to ensure abortions are protected nationally.

Washington is one of 16 states protecting the right to an abortion. Planned Parenthood said that’s not going to change despite the outcome of the ruling.

"Regardless of what the law says, that access is fundamental and if people can’t get the care they need when they need it, it doesn’t matter what our laws say," Planned Parenthood said.

The high court’s final decision -- potentially reverting 50 years of precedence – is a moment many are anxiously awaiting others, fearing it.

"Millions of people will lose access to abortion rights overnight and that will mean that we expect a double-digit increase in maternal mortality,"Bauer said. "It's going to be a consequence, it's going to be a reality that women die because of the lack of this medical procedure." 

While she knows no birth control is 100% effective, Bauer says having a child is an intimate and personal decision with repercussions.

"It can really mess up your whole life irretrievably to have children when you are not ready or able to care for them or just don't choose to," Bauer said.

FOX 13 reached out to several pro-life organizations and are waiting to hear back.

A decision on Roe V. Wade could come as early as Friday.