California Gov. Gavin Newsom rents billboards in 7 states attacking abortion restrictions

California Gov. Gavin Newsom launched a billboard campaign in seven states directing people to information on how they can access abortion services in California. 

The 18 billboards, running in Indiana, Mississippi, Ohio, Texas, South Carolina, South Dakota and Oklahoma, direct people to a website, abortion.ca.gov, that includes information for people who live outside California, in addition to other information about abortion access in the state. 

"Here is my message to any woman seeking abortion care in these anti-freedom states: Come to California. We will defend your constitutional right to make decisions about your own health,” Newsom said in a news release Thursday.  

“The idea that these Republican politicians are seeking to ‘protect life’ is a total farce. They are seeking to restrict and control their constituents and take away their freedom.”

The states where the billboards are running have all moved to restrict abortion access. The Supreme Court earlier this year overturned Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 decision that established a constitutional right to an abortion. 

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The billboards, personalized in each state, have different text on them. Examples of the ads in Texas read “Texas does not own your body. You do.” and “Need an abortion? California is ready to help.”  

Funding for the billboards came from Newsom’s campaign, according to multiple reports. USA TODAY has reached out for additional information.  

Newsom also shared images of the billboards on Twitter, tagging the governors of the individual states.  

USA TODAY has reached out to the governors of the states included in the billboard campaign for comment. 

Cory Custer, Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves' deputy chief of staff for external affairs, said in a statement to USA TODAY, “It is very interesting to see Governor Newsom’s 2024 primary campaign extend to Mississippi, but we do suspect that most Mississippians will not be interested in what he is selling.”  

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's press secretary, Renae Eze, said in a statement to USA TODAY that “Governor Newsom should focus on all the jobs and businesses that are leaving California and coming to Texas.” 

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem retweeted Newsom's tweet, adding "In South Dakota, we are a destination for FREEDOM and LIFE." 

This is not the first time Newsom has engaged with other states over abortion access. He ran advertisements over July Fourth weekend attacking Republicans’ actions in Florida.

“It’s Independence Day. So, let’s talk about what’s going on in America,” Newsom says in the ad. “Freedom is under attack in your state.” 

Contributing: Amy Nakamura, USA TODAY