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Gov. Kathy Hochul pledges $35 million to support abortion providers in New York State

Gov. Kathy Hochul earmarks millions for abortion services
Gov. Kathy Hochul earmarks millions for abortion services 02:19

NEW YORK -- With the future of Roe v. Wade uncertain, Gov. Kathy Hochul has earmarked millions to make sure abortion services are available in New York for anyone who needs them.

CBS2 political reporter Marcia Kramer says the governor also had a message for voters concerned about reproduction rights.

"Today is about taking action," Hochul said.

READ MORENew York Attorney General Letitia James supports legislation to protect, expand abortion access with Roe v. Wade in question

Although she's in quarantine after testing positive for COVID-19, Hochul held a virtual news conference to create an emergency fund to expand the ability of the state's abortion providers to meet the needs of the women from other states who are expected to flock here if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.

"We are laying down the marker today. We are saying that we refuse to go backwards. We have fought too long and hard for this access and for these rights, and New York has always led the way when it comes to enshrining these kinds of rights," Hochul said.

Gov. Kathy Hochul announces millions in funding to protect abortion access 20:52

The governor's "marker" includes $25 million from the Department of Health emergency fund to help providers increase capacity, and $10 million to help providers beef up security.

"We have to get these security measures in place now, and we have seen the threats and actually the action of anti-abortion violence, and the climate is getting more extreme every single day," Hochul said.

READ MORESenator Elizabeth Warren says leaked Supreme Court draft opinion on abortion "has opened a door to a whole lot of ugliness"

Senate Finance Chair Liz Krueger said the money is probably only a down payment, adding more funds will be needed.

"To make sure that the people coming across state lines who will disproportionately be low-income, young, and young women of color are able to come here and get the services they need," Krueger said.

The governor also pointed out that elections have consequences and that voters should worry about her leading Republican opponent, Lee Zeldin, who is against abortion.

"Certainly, they're not going to be very excited about someone who has already said, a candidate, a Republican candidate who already said that he would pick a pro-life health commissioner," Hochul said.

A spokesman for Zeldin fired back and changed the subject, saying, "It's absurd how desperate Kathy Hochul is to avoid talking about crime, the economy, education and other issues New Yorkers are identifying as most important to them."

Hochul also reminded voters that it's the actions and expected actions of Republican governors in other states that will drive up demand for abortions here.

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