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Thursday, August 11, 2022

U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, but it’s just the beginning for anti-abortion protesters

The United States Supreme Court ruled overturning Roe v. Wade, a landmark 1973 decision that recognized the constitutional right to abortion.

In Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the court ruled 6–3 that

The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is protected implicitly by any constitutional provision.

The regulation of abortion has now returned to the individual states. However, instead of resolving the abortion debate in the US, we are likely to see a dramatic escalation in abortion lawsuits and legislation.

This is because the anti-abortion goal has always been to stop abortion across the country. The dismissal of Roe v. Wade is only the beginning.

Read more: Row Canceled: What You Need to Know About the Supreme Court’s Abortion Decision

Rowe vs. Wade is constantly under attack

For 49 years, Roe v. Wade has been under constant attack from opponents of reproductive rights, has withstood repeated litigation, and has been repeatedly upheld by the Supreme Court.

Despite political divisions and polarizing rhetoric from Republican politicians, a 2021 poll found that 80% of Americans support abortion in all or most cases, and at least 60% support Roe v. Wade.

However, after former President Donald Trump was able to fill three vacancies on the Supreme Court, the Conservatives had a 6-3 majority on the bench.

The end of Roe v. Wade seemed inevitable, and the question arose whether the sentence would be gradually gutted or overturned in one fell swoop.

U.s. Supreme Court Overturns Roe V. Wade, But It'S Just The Beginning For Anti-Abortion Protesters
For 49 years, Roe v. Wade has been under constant attack from opponents of reproductive rights.
EPA/Michael Reynolds

What can Biden and the Democrats do?

In early May, Samuel Alito’s draft majority decision was leaked, indicating that it would be overturned.

Protests by supporters of the right to abortion erupted, including outside the Supreme Court and the homes of conservative judges.

President Joe Biden was quick to issue a statement asserting that “a woman’s right to choose is fundamental,” and his administration held meetings with abortion rights advocates in the following months. However, there is little the president or Democrats in Congress can do to reverse the decision.

In mid-May, the Senate was defeated in the Women’s Health Act, which sought to codify abortion rights.

And while the Democrats have majorities in both houses of Congress, without filibuster reform they won’t have enough people to pass the legislation that wiped out much of the Democratic agenda during the Biden presidency.

While Biden has promised to issue reproductive rights executive orders if Roe v. Wade is dropped, they will work to offset only some of the likely impact of the new abortion situation.

Meanwhile, days after the May leak, Congressional Republicans met with prominent anti-abortion leaders to discuss a nationwide ban on abortion in six weeks.

Such a move would shift the anti-abortion contours back into the national arena and ensure that abortion is at the center of attention in the 2024 presidential election.

U.s. Supreme Court Overturns Roe V. Wade, But It'S Just The Beginning For Anti-Abortion Protesters
There is little the President or Democrats in Congress can do.
Associated Press Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

Read more: How the U.S. right-to-life movement is influencing the abortion debate in Australia

State laws on access to and provision of abortions

With Roe v. Wade overturned, abortion access and provision will be determined by a patchwork of state laws.

Thirteen states already have “active” laws criminalizing abortion if Roe’s decision is overturned. Another 10 are expected to quickly take action to ban the procedure.

States hostile to abortion have also begun debating how to close legislative loopholes, with laws that are more extreme than any previously proposed.

In addition to introducing a ban on abortion, including from the moment of conception, many of the new laws no longer allow abortion in cases of rape or incest.

The provisions allowing abortion to protect the health of the mother are so narrowly defined that they are almost meaningless.

In Oklahoma, one Republican complained that the proposed law does not ban abortions in cases of ectopic pregnancy, a condition that is fatal to pregnant women if left untreated.

Louisiana Republicans debated language that would accuse female abortion patients of murder.

Anti-abortion advocates are also strategizing how to prevent patients from accessing abortions from out-of-state providers, including discussing interstate travel bans and imposing legal sanctions on abortion providers and support networks.

Nineteen states already ban virtual abortion care, and anti-abortion advocates are particularly keen to criminalize and restrict patients’ access to telemedicine-assisted medical abortion.

The National Committee on the Right to Life has developed a state model law that would make it illegal to provide information about self-abortion over the phone, the Internet, or a website, effectively targeting the First Amendment right to free speech.

U.s. Supreme Court Overturns Roe V. Wade, But It'S Just The Beginning For Anti-Abortion Protesters
This decision will inspire opponents of abortion.
EPA / Sean Tew

Some states have laws enshrining the right to have an abortion.

Reproductive rights advocates were also encouraged by the approaching conclusion of Roe v. Wade.

Sixteen states, mostly on the east and west coasts and the District of Columbia, have laws that enshrine the right to abortion.

California has passed laws protecting abortion providers and patients seeking medical care from out-of-state civil lawsuits, while New York has passed a package of laws that would make abortion a “safe haven.”

Lawyers are pushing for the White House to challenge any law criminalizing travel out of state for an abortion.

A Jewish synagogue is suing the state of Florida, alleging that the state’s ban on abortion violates religious freedoms protected by the First Amendment.

Read more: ‘A Revolutionary Decision – And Not Just About Abortion’: Supreme Court Scholar Explains Dobbs’ Influence

Impact on patients undergoing abortion

Politically and legally, the fight for abortion rights could explode across the country with no end in sight.

Yet the impact of today’s Supreme Court ruling will be most acutely felt by abortion patients.

Most of the most stringent abortion bans and regulations are in place in the South and Midwest, making abortion unaffordable in a wide geographic area of ​​the country.

Approximately half of American women and girls of reproductive age live in states where abortion is or will become illegal.

The repeal of Roe v. Wade would result in the closure of more than a quarter of the nation’s abortion clinics, putting enormous pressure on remaining service providers to offer urgent care to patients who are likely to travel hundreds of miles from home.

Abortion ban doesn’t stop abortions

A ban on abortion does not stop abortions or reduce their number. Regardless of the state of residence, pregnant women will still seek an abortion, although this may require significant resources and may face criminal sanctions.

Most abortion patients in the US already belong to vulnerable and marginalized populations.

The devastating consequences of this decision will fall primarily on the shoulders of those who are least able to endure it.

More: The end of Roe v. Wade is likely to embolden global anti-abortion activists and politicians.

World Nation News Desk
World Nation News Deskhttps://worldnationnews.com/
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