GOP attorneys general warn Google not to suppress anti-abortion centers in search results

Seventeen Republican attorneys general have urged not restricting the appearance of anti-abortion centers in search results. They asked a month after Democratic lawmakers not to refer people seeking abortion information to such centers. The Republican AGs suggested that if Google complies with the request from across the aisle, they could investigate the company and take legal action. “Unless you resist this political pressure, we will act swiftly to protect American consumers from this dangerous axis of corporate and government power,” they wrote to Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Alphabet.

Many of the eligible so-called crisis pregnancy centers have religious affiliations, such as that Remarks. Some centers have been accused of giving misleading information about abortion and contraception. Following the leak of a draft opinion suggesting that the Supreme Court would overturn Roe v. Wade, a ruling that secured abortion rights nationwide (a move the court took in late June), Democrats in the House and Senate sought to “crack down on false advertising that crisis pregnancy centers use to transport patients from them.” discourage them from receiving the reproductive care they need, including abortion care.”

“Referring women to bogus clinics that trade in misinformation and do not provide comprehensive health services is dangerous to women’s health and undermines the integrity of Google’s search results,” the Democratic lawmakers wrote in their June 17 letter. They cited statistics showing that a tenth of Google searches for terms like “abortion clinics near me” and “abortion pill” returned results for anti-abortion centers.

The Republican AGs disagreed with the Democrats’ letter. They found that crisis pregnancy centers often offer services such as free ultrasound scans, pregnancy tests, STD testing, and parenting classes. “These pregnancy centers serve women no matter who they are or what they believe,” they wrote. “These attacks not only threaten the relatives of the centers, but also the mothers who urgently need the centers’ help.”

The WGs noted that Planned Parenthood recognized that crisis pregnancy centers “have religious missions” and are “religious organizations that are anti-abortion.”[reek] of religious discrimination.”

They went on to say that if Google “complied with this unreasonable request to skew your search results against crisis pregnancy centers,” their offices would investigate the company for possible violations of religious and discrimination laws. The WGs would also “consider whether additional legislation – such as non-discrimination rules in general transport laws – is needed to protect consumers and markets”. They gave Google 14 days to respond.

Engadget has reached out to Google for comment. Google said it will remove visits to abortion clinics from users’ location histories. Meanwhile YouTube Today with unsafe instructions on how to self-administer an abortion.

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