New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy on Wednesday lifted restrictions on abortions that prevented it from being performed in a doctor's office after 13 weeks of pregnancy and enabling 15,000 nurses, physician assistants, and midwives across the state to conduct the procedure.

Just last week, the New Jersey State Board of Medical Examiners unanimously approved a new set of rules that would "eliminate medically unnecessary regulations on abortion in New Jersey new avenues for reproductive healthcare services across the state," New Jersey acting Attorney General Andrew Bruck explained.

According to the Christian Post, the changes in the regulation will repeal "the Termination of Pregnancy rule," which the Office of New Jersey believes "singles out abortion care for targeted regulation" by "requiring that all terminations of pregnancy be performed only by a physician, and barring office-based terminations beyond 14 weeks gestation."

The New Jersey governor's changes to the regulation also empower "Advanced Practice Nurses, Physician Assistants, and Certified Nurse Midwives and Certified Midwives to perform early aspiration terminations of pregnancy." Gov. Murphy said in a statement that New Jersey is working hard to "expand access to these vital services," especially "at a time when other states are creating roadblocks to reproductive health and abortion care," seemingly taking a swipe at Texas, which recently passed a slew of very restrictive anti-abortion bills.

According to North Jersey, up to 12,000 advanced practice nurses, 4,500 physician assistants and 420 midwives may become authorized to perform abortions once the policy takes effect in the coming months. Planned Parenthood was quick to praise the New Jersey governor's decision to allow nurses and midwives to perform abortions. The Reproductive Freedom Act, which Gov. Murphy supports, will also allow these workers to perform abortions.

Meanwhile, pro-life advocacy group New Jersey Right to Life executive directore Marie Tasy denounced the Reproductive Freedom Act as an "extreme, shameful bill." Tasy argued in a recent op-ed that the Reproductive Freedom Act is missing "any gestational limits," making it virtually possible for abortions to be performed any time during a pregnancy, "even if these babies are viable and at full-term."

Tasy also raised concerns over how the Reproductive Freedom Act may in turn allow the violation of the "long-standing Conscience Clause law for health care workers," forcing them to perform or assist in abortions even if it violates their personal, religious, or moral beliefs.

Ironically, the hugely Democratic New Jersey has stalled the Reproductive Freedom Act, mostly because lawmakers "don't think we really have to do this now. State Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg admitted in an interview with the New Jersey Globe. In addition, Senate President Steve Sweeney explained that facets of the Reproductive Freedom Act "already exist in statute in New Jersey right now."

Schoen-Cooperman Research, a Democratic polling firm, recently conducted a survey that revealed Gov. Murphy was leading his Republican opponent, Jack Ciattarelli by 9 percentage points. New Jersey and Virginia will be holding gubernatorial and state legislative elections before the year ends.