The Supreme Court is poised for the first time ever in U.S. History to remove a fundamental rights from more than half the country’s citizens. The Supreme Court’s December 1 oral argumentsIn Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health OrganizationThis is what progressives feared after Trump’s addition of three radical right-wingers on the court. The six conservatives who make up the high court are set to undermine the fundamental right to abort.
“If this court renounces the liberty interest recognized in Roe [v. Wade]Reaffirmed in [Planned Parenthood v.] CaseyIt would be an unprecedented contraction in individual rights and a radical departure from principles of stare decisis [duty to follow precedent],” U.S. The Supreme Court was informed by Elizabeth Prelogar, Solicitor General.
Yet “Justices” Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett and Neil Gorsuch appear ready to do just that. Chief Justice John Roberts may be reluctant to overturn the decision. Roe CaseyHe indicated his willingness to uphold the Mississippi law banning abortions after 15 weeks, effectively removing women’s right to choose abortion.
1973 Roe v. Wade held that abortion was a “fundamental right” for a woman’s “life and future” and states could not ban abortion until the fetus is viable (able to survive outside the womb), which is around 23 weeks of pregnancy. The Court reaffirmed the “essential holding” of RoeIn the 1992 case of Planned Parenthood v. Casey and said states could only enact restrictions on abortion that do not impose an “undue burden” on the right to a pre-viability abortion.
Although it is not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution the court in Roe CaseyThe liberty section of the Constitution enshrined the right to abortion due process clause of the 14th Amendment, which says states shall not “deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.”
Mississippi passed the Gestational Age Act2018 It outlaws nearly all abortions within 15 weeks of pregnancy, and well before viability. The law contains exceptions for medical emergencies and cases of “severe fetal abnormality,” but makes no exception for rape or incest. Mississippi was prevented from enforcing this law by a federal court and the Fifth Circuit U.S Court of Appeals, because it is directly inconsistent with. Roe Casey.Mississippi petitioned for review to the Supreme Court and it agreed to hear their case.
Right-Wingers Claim Intent in Neutral Sounding Language
Mississippi is asking for the court to reverse its decision Roe Casey It will uphold its ban on abortion after fifteen weeks. If the court was not inclined overrule Casey, Mississippi’s lawyer Scott Stewart proposed an “undue burden standard, untethered from any bright-line viability rule.”
Solicitor General Prelogar began her argument by saying, “The court has never revoked a right that is so fundamental to so many Americans and so central to their ability to participate fully and equally in society. The court should not overrule this central component of women’s liberty.”
The six conservative members of court disguised their intentions to limit abortion rights in neutral-sounding language. Their rationalizations for ending or restricting women’s right to control their bodies were deceitful.
Justice Kavanaugh said the court shouldn’t “pick sides” but instead remain “scrupulously neutral on the question of abortion, neither pro-choice nor pro-life.” He asked Prelogar why the Supreme Court shouldn’t leave the decision on whether and when to allow abortion to Congress, the state legislatures and state supreme courts. “Because the court correctly recognized that this is a fundamental right of women, and the nature of fundamental rights is that it’s not left up to state legislatures to decide whether to honor them or not,” she responded.
The “protection of fundamental rights should not be left to legislatures,” wroteDean Erwin, Dean of the University of California Berkeley, School of Law in the Los Angeles Times. “For almost a century the Supreme Court has held that personal ‘liberty’ is safeguarded by the Constitution, leading in time to the constitutional right to privacy reproductive autonomy.”
Julie Rikelman, attorney for Jackson Women’s Health Organization (the only remaining clinic that provides abortions in Mississippi), told the court, “Casey and Roe were correct. For a state to take control of a woman’s body and demand that she go through pregnancy and childbirth with all the physical risks and life-altering consequences that brings is a fundamental deprivation of her liberty.”
Justice Kavanaugh testified during his confirmation hearingThat Roe had “been reaffirmed many times over in the past 45 years … most prominently, most importantly, reaffirmed in Casey v. Planned Parenthood in 1992.… That makes Casey precedent on precedent.”
But during the arguments in Dobbs, Kavanaugh changed his tune on the importance of “stare decisis.” He justified his apparent intent to overrule Roe CaseyHere are some cases in which the court overruled its earlier decisions. These cases involved voting rights, racial segregation and criminal legal rights. Most of the cases resulted in the court “recognizing overturning state control over issues that we said belong to individuals,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor retorted.
Justice Barrett callously stated that outlawing abortion wouldn’t harm women because they could simply carry a pregnancy to term and then put the baby up for adoption. She cited “safe haven laws” in which people can anonymously leave their newborn in a safe place. Jackson Women’s Health attorney Rikelman replied, “We don’t just focus on the burdens of parenting, and neither did Roe and Casey. The uniqueness of pregnancy is what makes it so special. It imposes unique physical demands and risks on women and, in fact, has impact on all of their lives, on their ability to care for other children, other family members, on their ability to work.” Rikelman also noted that, “It’s 75 times more dangerous to give birth in Mississippi than it is to have a pre-viability abortion.”
When Justice Gorsuch questioned the workability of the undue burden standard, Rikelman said that “the undue burden test is not at issue in this case. This is the test which applies to regulations, and not prohibitions. And the state has conceded that this is a prohibition.”
Gorsuch inquired about the undue burden standard prior to viability. Rikelman responded that undue weight without viability is equivalent to overturning Roe Casey “because the viability line is the central holding of those cases.”
Chief Justice Roberts attempted a pro-choice position by saying that Mississippi women can still have an abortion after the 15th week. “If you think that the issue is one of choice, that women should have a choice to terminate their pregnancy, that supposes that there is a point at which they’ve had the fair choice, opportunity to choice, why would 15 weeks be an inappropriate line?” Roberts asked. “Because viability, it seems to me, doesn’t have anything to do with choice. But, if it really is an issue about choice, why is 15 weeks not enough time?”
Plaintiff attorney Rickelman responded, “Without viability, there will be no stopping point.” Solicitor General Prelogar warned that “immediately states with six-week bans, eight-week bans, 10-week bans, and so on, would seek to enforce those with no continued guidance of what the scope of the liberty interest is going forward.”
Roe and Casey are “part of the fabric of women’s existence in this country,” Justice Elena Kagan declared. Rikelman claimed that one in four women had an abortion.
“The right of a woman to choose, the right to control her own body, has been clearly set since Casey and never challenged,” Justice Sotomayor said. “You want us to reject that line of viability and adopt something different.” She noted that 15 justices from differing political backgrounds have affirmed the viability cutoff since 1992.
Sotomayor nailed it when she asked Mississippi lawyer Stewart, “How is your interest anything but a religious view?” — referring to the debate over when life begins. Justice Alito didn’t pull any punches when he asked Rikelman, “The fetus has an interest in having a life, and that doesn’t change, does it, from the point before viability to the point after viability?” Rikelman said that the viability cutoff “makes sense because it focuses on the fetus’s ability to survive separately, which is an appropriate legal line because it’s objectively verifiable and doesn’t delve into philosophical questions about when life begins.”
Justice Thomas was most interested in expanding criminal liability for women for fetal harm to the period before viability.
Justice Stephen Breyer quoted Casey: “To overrule under fire in the absence of the most compelling reason to re-examine a watershed decision would subvert the court’s legitimacy beyond any serious question.” Justice Sotomayor concurred, inquiring, “Will this institution survive the stench this creates in the public perception that the Constitution and its reading are just political acts?.… If people actually believe that it’s all political, how will the court survive?”
On September 1, right-wingers indicated their intention to gut Roe Casey by allowing Texas’s Senate Bill 8 (which outlaws abortion after six weeks of pregnancy) to go into effect with no briefing, argument or consideration by the lower courts. Only Chief Justice Roberts voted to stop the Texas law in its preliminary stage, being aware of the legitimacy and credibility of the Roberts court. SB 8 is still in effect, and it has prevented most Texas abortion-seekers from obtaining abortions.
If Roe CaseyIf the laws are repealed, abortion would be illegal in half of the states or severely restricted in the other half. according to the Guttmacher Institute. People of color and those who are poor or cannot afford to travel abroad to have abortions legalized in their state would be the most adversely affected.
“There was a big movement for legalizing abortion before the [Roe] decision. I think people forget that,” Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority Foundation, told The Guardian. “We talk about back-alley abortion but [women] were dying.” Hospitals closed “septic abortion” wardsThere are many working-class and poor people in this area. had died from infectionAfter desperate attempts to end pregnancies, injury.
If the court revokes the right to abort, other rights not specifically listed in the Constitution will also be at risk, including the rights of contraception and homosexual conduct, as well as same-sex marriage.
The court will announce its decision by the end June 2022, just over four months before midterm elections. A decision that is guts Roe CaseyThis will likely to motivate voters, 75 per cent of whom said a Washington Post/ABC News poll that abortion decisions should be “left to the woman and her doctor” and not “regulated by law.”