This week in wins: Illinois guarantees a woman's fundamental right to health care


In the same week that Trump admitted he would be open to traitorous activity in 2020, state governments across the country got busy working for progress.

The news this week felt particularly awful, as Trump said out loud that he has no qualms colluding again with hostile foreign governments in 2020 — a traitorous admission Republicans did their darnedest to excuse.

But there was a lot of good stuff happening in Democratic-controlled states across the country, where legislators and governors were passing and signing laws that benefit real people.

Here's a look at this week in wins:

Illinois codifies law protecting a woman's 'fundamental right' to an abortion

As GOP-controlled states pass draconian bills that stomp on a woman's right to an abortion, Illinois' Democratic Gov. JB Pritzker signed into law a bill that makes abortion a "fundamental right" in the Land of Lincoln.

The law, titled the Reproductive Health Act, immediately went into effect when Pritzker signed it on Wednesday. And it states that a "fertilized egg, embryo, or fetus does not have independent rights under the law of this State."

"In a time when too many states across the nation are taking a step backward, Illinois is taking a giant step forward for women's health," Pritzker said in a statement. "Illinois is demonstrating what it means to affirm the rights of individuals to make the most personal and fundamental decisions of their lives, no matter your income level, race, ethnicity or religion."

Unaccompanied minors at the border are legally entitled to abortions

A federal appeals court on Friday ruled that the anti-abortion Trump administration cannot legally bar unaccompanied minor immigrants in federal custody at the border from accessing an abortion.

Back in 2017, Trump's Office of Refugee Resettlement, then led by anti-abortion zealot Scott Lloyd, tried to stop unaccompanied minors who asked for abortions once in U.S. custody. Lloyd also tried to stop minors who were victims of rape from accessing abortion, thus trying to force them to give birth against their will.

However, the minors sued. A district court back in 2018 ordered Lloyd to let the girls who requested abortions to receive them.

And now, a federal appeals court has upheld that ruling.

"Under binding Supreme Court precedent, a person has a constitutional right to terminate her pregnancy before viability and the government cannot unduly burden her decision," the ruling says.

Americans favor civil rights protections for the LGBTQ community

House Democrats in May passed a historic Equality Act that offered equal rights to LGBTQ Americans — a landmark bill that would ensure members of the LGBTQ community couldn't be fired from their job or evicted from their homes because of their gender or sexuality.

And a new Gallup poll released on Thursday found that 53% of Americans believe that laws like the Equality Act are "needed to reduce discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people."

It doesn't mean that the GOP-controlled Senate — run by "grim reaper" Mitch McConnell — will take up the law anytime soon.

But it does mean that McConnell is on the wrong side of history and the majority of Americans who believe in equal rights legislation.

Nevada's Democratic governor signs worker protections into law

Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak signed a handful of bills into law on Thursday aimed at protecting workers in Nevada.

The protections include requiring mandatory sick leave for workers, a raise in the minimum wage, and collective bargaining for state workers — which gives them the right to unionize, the Nevada Independent reported.

The minimum wage increase will start to go into effect in 2020, when it will rise to $9 an hour. By 2024, the minimum wage will increase to $12 for employers that don't provide health insurance, and $11 to those that do, according to the Nevada Independent.

Even more, companies with at least 50 employees must give accrued sick leave to their workers.

New York ends religious exemptions for vaccines

The anti-vaxxer movement was dealt a significant blow in New York, after Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed into law a bill that ends religious exemptions for vaccines.

"The science is crystal clear: Vaccines are safe, effective and the best way to keep our children safe," Cuomo said in a statement. "This administration has taken aggressive action to contain the measles outbreak, but given its scale, additional steps are needed to end this public health crisis."

The law comes amid a major measles outbreak across the country, largely thanks to the growing number of parents who believe anti-vax propaganda refusing to vaccinate their children.

New York has had one of the largest outbreaks, fueled by members of the Orthodox Jewish community who have cited religious rules as their reason for not vaccinating their children.

The elimination of the exemption will help stop the outbreak of preventable diseases like measles.

Come back next week for more good news.