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Colorado Secretary of State calls for Alabama boycott in wake of abortion legislation

Secretary of State Jena Griswold banned work-related travel to Alabama after the state passed new abortion regulations this week.
Credit: NBC VOD

DENVER — Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold is stepping into the abortion debate.

Griswold announced Thursday that she was banning department staff from taking work-related trips to the state of Alabama, where lawmakers just instituted America's most extensive abortion ban. She also called on the National Association of Election Officials, in Auburn, Ala., to relocate.

“Until the laws of Alabama allow for safe and legal access to health care for women, we call on the Election Center to move the location of its trainings from Alabama. I will not authorize the spending of state resources on travel to Alabama for this training or any other purpose. This is one action that I can take in response to this egregious law against women," Griswold said in a statement.

The Election Center often hosts training events, including one that's currently underway.

Colorado did not send any employees to the event. A spokesperson for Griswold said a regional training had already been scheduled next month in Denver. However, according to Griswold's statement, employees from the Colorado Department of State regularly travel to Auburn for training and certification.

“This restrictive law, which does not even allow exceptions for incest and rape, is appalling. We should not spend Colorado state resources in a state that restricts women’s basic rights to health care. I call on other state and local leaders in Colorado and across the country to join me in this boycott,” Griswold said.

Governor Jared Polis hasn't called for a similar travel ban, but he did condemn Alabama's legislation on his personal Twitter account.

Alabama's Republican governor, Kay Ivey,  signed the Human Life Protection Act into law on Wednesday. The measure makes performing an abortion a felony punishable by up to 99 years in prison for the provider. There is no exception for cases involving rape and incest, but it does allow for abortions "to avoid a serious health risk to the unborn child's mother."

Women would not be prosecuted.

The law doesn't go into effect for six months.

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