California has suspended all business dealings with Walgreens after the pharmacy chain's recent move to halt the sale of abortion pills in several states. The decision, which has sparked controversy and backlash, has prompted Gov. Gavin Newsom to take action against the company.
The move comes as reproductive rights remain a divisive and highly contested issue across the United States.
"California won't be doing business with @walgreens - or any company that cowers to the extremists and puts women's lives at risk," the Democratic governor tweeted. "We're done."
According to a press release issued by Newsom's office, the state's Department of General Services has a contract with the pharmacy "to procure specialty pharmacy prescription drugs," which are primarily used by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and the state's correctional health care system.
On Wednesday, Newsom's office stated that the state would not be renewing a $54 million deal with Walgreens, which was set to begin on May 1, 2023.
The dispute between Newsom and Walgreens is the latest round of repercussion from the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
The decision, handed down in June of last year, has complicated relationships between political and business leaders and has jolted national politics in the run-up to the 2022 midterms, with many Democrats attributing the backlash to boosting their candidates in tough, swing state and seat battles.
Abortion rights are highly divisive in the United States due to a complex combination of factors, including deeply held religious and moral beliefs, political ideologies, and differing views on the nature and value of human life.
Many Americans who identify as pro-life view abortion as the taking of an innocent life, and believe that it should be illegal in all cases. They argue that the fetus is a human being with the same right to life as any other person, and that abortion is therefore morally wrong and should be criminalized.
On the other hand, those who identify as pro-choice believe that a woman has the right to make decisions about her own body and reproductive health, including the right to access safe and legal abortion. They argue that a woman's right to control her own body is fundamental, and that denying her that right is a violation of her basic human rights.
These differing views have led to a highly polarized political climate in which the issue of abortion is often used as a wedge issue to mobilize voters and advance political agendas. The ongoing legal battles and political debates surrounding abortion rights have further contributed to the controversy and division surrounding the issue.