Leaked Supreme Court’s draft abortion decision will overturn Roe v. Wade

An anti-abortion activist holds a doll during a protest outside the Supreme Court, ahead of arguments in the Mississippi abortion rights lawsuit. Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, in Washington, U.S., January 1 December 2021.

Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

The Supreme Court is poised to overturn the constitutionally protected abortion right guaranteed by Roe’s decision to sue Wade, nearly 50, according to a leaked early draft of New opinion obtained by Politico.

The draft was written by Justice Samuel Alito, with the consent of at least four other conservative members of the Supreme Court.

“We hold that Roe and Casey Alito wrote in the decision, which is related to Mississippi’s strict new abortion law, as reported Monday night.

The draft comments referenced the 1992 Supreme Court decision in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which further strengthened constitutional protections for women.

“The time has come to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the elected representatives of the people,” justice wrote in a draft released by Politico.

Alito also wrote, “Roe was seriously wrong from the start,” the report said.

CNBC was unable to confirm the authenticity of the draft opinion, which Politico said was made among judges in February. It is unclear whether there will be further changes to the draft.

The draft opinion, if formally issued by the court before its term ends in about two months, would leave individual states to place any restrictions on when and how a woman can pregnancy can be terminated.

It would also be a huge victory for religious conservatives, who for decades have pushed states to pass laws restricting abortion rights and asking the Supreme Court to overturn Roe’s rulings. and Casey.

But the news outlet notes that the Supreme Court’s draft opinions are not set in stone, and judges sometimes change their opinion on a case after a copy of the draft. circulated among them.

Politico also notes that “no draft decision in the modern history of the court has been publicly disclosed while a case is still being resolved. The unprecedented disclosure will certainly intensify the debate. debate on the most controversial case of this term.”

High Court news site SCOTUSblog tweeted: “It is impossible to overstate the earthquake this will cause inside the Court, in terms of destroying trust between the Judges and staff. This leak is the heaviest, most unforgivable sin.”

Politico’s executive editor, Dafna Linzer, wrote in an editor’s note that “after an extensive review process, we are confident in the authenticity of the draft.”

“The unprecedented view of the judges’ deliberations is clearly news of great public interest,” she wrote.

A spokeswoman for the Supreme Court did not immediately respond to a request for comment from CNBC.

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Alito’s ruling comes in the Dobbs Women’s Health Foundation v. Jackson, a case centered on a Mississippi law that prohibits abortions nearly after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

Lower federal courts blocked the law on the grounds that it violated legal protections established by the Roe and Casey decisions.

Those rulings jointly protect abortions before the baby is still alive – around 24 weeks of age – and require that laws governing abortions not place an “undue burden”.

In oral arguments before the high court in December, the liberal justices expressed serious concern about the court’s consequences – which have been at the center of controversy and are facing approval. all-time low from the public – reversing decades of precedent on perhaps the most divisive issue in US politics.

“Can this institution survive the stench this creates in the public perception that the Constitution and its reading are purely political?” Justice Sonia Sotomayor wondered aloud in those debates. “I don’t see how it is possible,” she said.

The Mississippi law that sparked the Supreme Court case would ban virtually all abortions after 15 weeks of gestation.

Lower federal courts blocked enforcement of the law, ruling that it violated Roe and Casey, which protect abortions before the fetus is still alive – about 24 weeks old – and asked for the law to be regulated. abortion should not place “undue burden”.

In the draft opinion, as reported, Alito wrote, “The Constitution makes no mention of abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision, including both the right on which the defenders of Roe and Casey now largely rely – the Fourteenth Amendment Clause proceedings.”

“Roe defenders describe abortion rights as similar to rights recognized in previous decisions regarding issues such as intimate sex, contraception and marriage,” Alito wrote, according to Politico.

“But abortion is fundamentally different, as both Roe and Casey admit, because it destroys what those decisions call ‘fetal life’ and what the law is now before they were born.” I describe as ‘an unborn person’.” “

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