This Abortion Boat Sounds Fishy

How did a man with no experience in abortion care launch a service for offshore procedures, just weeks after the fall of Roe v. Wade?

By Susan Rinkunas
Aug 17, 2022

In the two dystopian months since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, reproductive rights supporters have been desperate for any positive news on the abortion front. Stories are pouring out by the day of pregnant people forced into unimaginable situations. So when a mysterious abortion boat appeared out of nowhere off the coast of Texas in July, claiming to have already provided dozens of abortions in federal waters, a lot of people needed it to be a hero.

That boat, run by a for-profit company called Abort Offshore, claimed it could offer abortions up to 20 weeks in the Gulf of Mexico, immune to state laws. And it started doing so, apparently, at a rapid clip: On July 23, Abort Offshore announced that it had done 34 abortions as a test. By August 3, it claimed to have provided more than 100 procedures. And just 10 days later, the company tweeted that it had performed nearly 200 legal abortions for women from Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.