Lieutenant Governor Kounalakis Statement on Constitutional Amendment to Enshrine Right to Abortion Passing First Legislative Hurdle

Image of the California State seal and text: Eleni Kounalakis Lieutenant Governor

Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Sacramento, CA – Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis released the following statement today applauding the Senate Judiciary Committee’s passage of SCA-10 (Atkins), legislation amending the California Constitution to enshrine the right to abortion and contraception:

“With the right to abortion guaranteed by Roe v. Wade for almost half a century at risk of being overturned any day, California will continue to lead the nation to ensure that Californians, and those who come here to seek care, are able to access safe and legal abortions.

“Abortion is a decision that should be between a woman or pregnant person, and their healthcare provider. Californians overwhelmingly do not want to see this right taken away through the overturning of Roe v Wade. I applaud Senator Atkins and the state legislature for taking decisive action to ensure that despite any future court decisions or federal action, Californians will have the strongest possible protections for this fundamental right.”

Lieutenant Governor Kounalakis is a proud co-sponsor of SCA-10, joining Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California, NARAL Pro-Choice California, ACCESS REPRODUCTIVE JUSTICE, Black Women for Wellness Action Project, Essential Access Health and the National Health Law Program.

If approved by the state Senate and Assembly with two-thirds approval in each house by the June 30 deadline, SCA 10 will place a measure on the November 2022 ballot allowing California voters to enshrine the right to abortion and right to choose or refuse contraceptives into the state constitution.


Eleni Kounalakis is the 50th lieutenant governor of California and the first woman elected to the position. From 2010 to 2013, Kounalakis served as President Barack Obama’s Ambassador to the Republic of Hungary. In 2019, Governor Gavin Newsom designated Kounalakis as his Representative for International Affairs and Trade Development, and as Chair of the corresponding Interagency Committee that oversees the state’s trade, investment and international relations. Kounalakis is also Chair of the three-member State Lands Commission, and a voting member of the University of California Board of Regents, the California State University Board of Trustees, and the California Community Colleges Board of Governors.