Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court's 1973 Roe v. Wade decision gave women the right to an abortion, state lawmakers have faced decisions on how strictly they want to regulate the procedure.
Here are the five states with arguably the least strict laws regarding abortion:
California was ranked as the nation's best state for reproductive rights in 2013, according to a list on the second page of a report by NARAL Pro-Choice America
. California enacted more pro-choice legislation in 2013 than any other state, with four new laws, according to the report.
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Washington was ranked as the second-best state for reproductive rights in 2013 in the report by NARAL Pro-Choice America. Meanwhile, the anti-abortion group Americans United for Life in January 2015 ranked Washington as the nation's "most pro-abortion" state, according to LifeNews.com.
3. New York
New York is the state with the most open and least restrictive abortion laws, as many women from other states travel there to receive abortion care, according to awmchoice.com.
New York requires no 24 hour waiting periods and Medicaid covers abortions for low-income women. In addition, teenagers don't need a parent's permission to have an abortion. New York was ranked as the 10th best state for reproductive rights in 2013 in the report by NARAL Pro-Choice America.
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Hawaii was ranked as the fourth best state for reproductive rights in 2013 in the report by NARAL Pro-Choice America. According to the report, in 2013 Hawaii enacted a law to guarantee emergency contraception in the emergency room for sexual assault survivors, which was the third way in which that state had ensured access to that medication.
In January 2015, AUL ranked Vermont as the nation's second most "pro-abortion" state, reports LifeNews.com. Vermont had been ranked as the eighth best state for reproductive rights in 2013 in the report by NARAL Pro-Choice America.
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