Abortion rights: Leaked document appears to show US Supreme Court may overturn Wade v Roe | US News
A leaked document appears to show that a majority of US Supreme Court justices plan to support overturning the historic Roe v Wade case law that legalized abortion.
Politico claims to have seen the draft ‘opinion’ which, if correct, is, they say, a “full rejection” and “zero tolerance of the 1973 decision” to ensure constitutional protection legislation on abortion rights.
The publication of the judicial opinion was written by Judge Samuel Alito and circulated inside the court.
It clearly states that “Roe was seriously wrong from the start.”
It is not clear at this stage whether the draft represents the final word of the court on the matter.
The Supreme Court There has yet to be a final verdict in the case, and opinions – and even the judges’ votes – have been known to change during the drafting process. The court is expected to rule on the case before the deadline expires in late June or early July.
The revelation was greeted with disappointment from abortion rights groups.
Planned Parenthood tweeted: “While abortion is still legal, tonight’s report makes clear our deepest fears are coming true.
“We’ve reached a moment of crisis for access to abortion. We don’t have a moment to spare – we have to act now.”
Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said if the decision was upheld, it would be a “direct attack on the dignity, rights and lives of women, not to mention decades of settlement discipline.
“It would kill and subdue women even if the vast majority of Americans thought abortion was legal,” she continued.
“What a complete disgrace.”
In a joint statement, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said: “If the report is accurate, the Supreme Court stands ready to introduce the largest power restriction in fifty years. — not just for women, but for all Americans.
“The reported votes of the Republican-appointed Judges to overturn Roe v. Wade will be viewed as an abomination, one of the worst and most damaging decisions in modern history. .”
Senator and pro-democracy activist Bernie Sanders says people need to act “NOW” to “pass legislation Roe v Wade as the law of the land”.
Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren described the Supreme Court as “radical” and said it wanted to “impose its unpopular, far-right views on the entire country”.
Politico published what they said was labeled a “First Draft” of “Court Opinion” in a case challenges Mississippi’s abortion ban after 15 weeksa case known as the Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Foundation.
The Supreme Court currently has a 6-3 conservative majority. Justice Alito was appointed by former President George W Bush.
Politico said he signed a draft that reads: “Roe was seriously wrong from the start.
“We argue that Roe and Casey must be changed,” it added, referring to the 1992 Planned Parenthood v Casey case that asserted Roe found a constitutional right to abortion – but allowed states to set impose some constraints on this activity.
Analysis by Greg Milam, US correspondent
The U.S. Supreme Court decision on abortion is one of the most important and likely to happen in decades in the American judiciary.
That makes the leak of the draft ruling all the more startling, and is sure to spark a backlash against the courts and states that pushed for the abortion ban.
The contents of the leaked opinion piece, written by Conservative Justice Samuel Alito, should come as little surprise to anyone. The court’s conservative leanings these days have most people hoping it will side with the Republican states when it comes to final opinion.
When Donald Trump, as the man in power in the presidential office, had the opportunity to appoint three new judges to the court, many commentators saw the writing on the wall. Abortion is an important issue for Trump voters.
But the unprecedented nature of this leak – with hardly anything leaking from the inner workings of the Supreme Court, let alone the draft comments – will make those seeking to indignant defenders of the right to abortion.
If Alito suggested, if a court overturned the constitutional right to seek abortion, individual states would ban or restrict that right. The ruling will trigger an automatic ban in 13 states and automatically keep it legal in 17 others.
Campaigners say it poses risks to the health of women across the United States, with traveling hundreds of miles to states where abortion is not possible.
The Biden administration has been outspoken in its condemnation of legislation restricting abortion. The White House and the US face a test of how to respond.
The report’s leaks come amid legislative push to restrict abortion in several Republican-led states – most recently Oklahoma – even before the court’s decision.
A Supreme Court spokesman said the court had no comment.
The leak started the intense political debate that the supreme court’s final decision is expected to have in the midterm election year.
Politicians on both sides have seized on it to raise funds and encourage their supporters on both sides of the contentious issue.
An AP-NORC poll in December found that Democrats increasingly make protecting abortion rights a top government priority.
Other polls show relatively few Americans want to see Roe overturned.
In 2020, AP VoteCast found that 69% of voters in the presidential election said the Supreme Court should uphold Roe Wade’s decision; only 29% said the court should overturn the decision.
Overall, the AP-NORC poll found that the majority of the public supported abortion as legal in most or all cases.
However, when asked about abortion policy in general, Americans have different attitudes on this issue and many do not think that abortion should be done after the first trimester or that women can legally have an abortion because any reason.
Alito said the court cannot predict how the public might react and should not try. “We cannot allow our decisions to be influenced by any externalities such as concerns about the public’s reaction to our work,” Alito wrote in the draft opinion, according to the statement. Politico.
So far, courts have allowed states to regulate but not ban abortions before the time it is feasible, about 24 weeks.
The court’s three liberal judges appear to be at odds.