Most Greater Haverhill Legislators Vote to Override Baker’s Veto, Enact Abortion Law

Rep. Linda Dean Campbell. (Courtesy photograph.)

Most of Greater Haverhill’s legislative delegation was in agreement this week to override Gov. Charlie Baker’s Christmas Eve veto of legislation reforming reproductive rights.

The Senate reaffirmed its support Tuesday for what is known as the Roe Act on a 32-8 vote.  Sens. Diana DiZoglio of Methuen and Barry R. Finegold, were among those in the majority. Sen. Bruce E. Tarr of Gloucester voted against overriding the governor. Local members of the state House of Representatives, however, were split when they voted Monday.

Reps. Andy X. Vargas of Haverhill and Christina Minicucci of North Andover voted with the majority to override the Republican governor’s veto, while Reps. Linda Dean Campbell of Methuen and Leonard Mirra of West Newbury voted to sustain the veto. Altogether, the House voted 107-46 on Monday to override Baker.

The bill, initially passed within the state budget and then returned by Baker with amendments that lawmakers ultimately rejected, allows abortions after 24 weeks of pregnancy in cases with a fatal fetal anomaly and if “necessary, in the best medical judgment of the physician, to preserve the patient’s physical or mental health.” It would also lower from 18 to 16 the age at which individuals can seek an abortion without consent from a parent or a judge.

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