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Supreme Court abortion ruling a ‘wake-up call,’ Ms. Foundation CEO says

Ms. Foundation CEO Teresa Younger joins Yahoo Finance Live to discuss the Supreme Court's decision to overturn 'Roe v. Wade' and how this will impact the United States.

Video Transcript

MAXINE WATERS: To deny women the right to control their own bodies. We're not intimidated. We're going to fight. We're not going backwards. We're going forward. I don't care what that vote is today. They cannot stop us. We are going to control our lives.

- What does going forward mean? What are the next tangible steps--

MAXINE WATERS: Well, that's it. We're going to do everything that we can possibly do. We're going to continue to organize. We're going to turn out a huge vote of women. We're going to see if we can get something on the ballot real soon. We're going to do everything that we can possibly do. Thank you.

- Thank you.

AKIKO FUJITA: California Congresswoman Maxine Waters there a short time ago, reacting to the Supreme Court decision that overturned Roe v. Wade, vowing to fight back. Certainly, we're continuing to monitor reaction from lawmakers, as well as companies as well. But let's talk about the repercussions or implications of this ruling. We are joined by the Ms. Foundation president and CEO, Teresa Younger. And Teresa, I think there's a lot of women who are processing this today, saying, well, what exactly does this mean for my future?

TERESA YOUNGER: Yeah, so I mean, what we understand is that the Supreme Court today has basically said that women do not have control over their bodies. They cannot make the decisions around if and when to be a parent. And what they have said is they booted it back to the state level.

So for folks in their own communities, they are going to need to find out what is available in their state. We know there are 26 states that have trigger laws that will change all of this. You're going to need to show up at the polls. We're going to need to hold elected officials accountable so that we can change the laws because they are now going to need to be made more relevant on the state level.

BRIAN CHEUNG: Teresa, it's Brian Cheung here. So you mentioned those states that have trigger laws. I imagine there's going to be kind of movement in those individual states, perhaps, to address the way that their local governments are handling all of this. But I guess, at a federal level, I mean, you heard the conversation from Maxine Waters, the California Democrat, just now. Maybe some traction on Capitol Hill for a federal approach to this via Congress. Is that something that your foundation is also thinking about? Could you see traction on Capitol Hill for something like that?

TERESA YOUNGER: I think we are going to see traction everywhere. This was a wake up call for so many people because this is one of many of the steps the Supreme Court has put forth this week with really bad decisions, the way I look at it, you know? For some people, this may feel like they've waited all their lives for this. But today, I think we're going to see a lot of federal legislation or attempts to make things work. We're going to see state levels.

And what we need to understand is that organizers who have been doing this work for years and years and years, because the Roe decision has been under attack in many states year after year. They are going to continue to fight. And we are going to be organizing on the national level to ensure, and the federal level, to ensure that women have bodily control and access to abortion and the ability to own their own privacy rights. And we're going to require and rely on the federal government to help those states who are, in many instances, majority led by men.

AKIKO FUJITA: Teresa, I want to direct our viewers to another live image that we're watching right now. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez now coming out here before the Supreme Court here, greeting protesters as well. Expected to see that throughout the day. But as an organization who has really fought for women's rights, I'm wondering how you're thinking about mobilizing. We're just less than five months out from the midterm elections. What are you thinking right now in terms of how to respond to this decision as an organization?

TERESA YOUNGER: There will be multiple opportunities for people to take action and get involved in what is happening, both on a state level and on a federal level. We're going to really be encouraging. Much of the support the Ms. Foundation has done is to support local grassroots organizations. And we're going to continue to support them.

We're going to ask philanthropy to move more money quickly. We are going to ask them to, instead of creating abstract measures, create measures that allow money to move quickly, so that these organizations on the ground can organize their communities, can talk about the facts, can ensure that they have the legislators on their side on the state level, to help move things.

And on top of the legislation and on top of the action, we're going to need to make sure that women have wraparound supports to the access to abortion that they need, whether child care, whether that is our places to stay, whether that is getting to an abortion clinic or into a doctor's office who can perform the services, making sure that they have dollars so that they can make these things happen, and that their jobs are preserved when they come back to work.

BRIAN CHEUNG: Yeah, just wide ranging implications across the board. You can see, again, those images down in Washington, DC, outside of First Street Northeast, with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez now speaking. A lot of people congregating out there. But the Ms. Foundation president and CEO, Teresa Younger, thanks so much for taking the time on this very busy day. We really appreciate it.