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Sen. Kamala Harris holds her first organizing event in Los Angeles as she campaigns in the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination race in Los Angeles, California, on May 19, 2019. Photo by Mike Blake/Reuters

Harris says changes to state abortion laws should require federal approval

Kamala Harris says she would require states seeking to restrict abortion laws to first obtain federal approval.

The Democratic presidential candidate and California senator says that if she won the White House, she would back legislation requiring states with a history of restricting abortion rights to receive clearance from the Justice Department to change abortion laws.

The move follows laws that recently passed in Georgia, Alabama and other states to drastically restrict abortions.

The pre-clearance requirement would face steep hurdles. The Supreme Court struck down a similar provision of the Voting Rights Act in 2013, effectively freeing states to change election laws without seeking federal approval.

The Harris campaign argues that decision doesn’t ban pre-clearance measures, leaving it up to Congress to decide how to impose such requirements.

READ MORE: What does Kamala Harris believe? Where the candidate stands on 9 issues

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