The Supreme Court has officially overturned the landmark case of Roe v. Wade. The decision follows a leaked draft decision that was released in May. While expected, pro-choice advocates were hoping to put enough pressure on the nation’s highest court to change their minds.
Those efforts were unsuccessful. The federally protected right to have an abortion will now fall to the states. Several states already have legal frameworks in place to completely ban the practice, according to CNN.
Unless Congress acts on the matter, individual states will now make their own decisions on the legality of abortion. Nearly half of the United States has or will pass laws that restrict or ban the procedure. Justice Samuel Alito wrote in his majority opinion that Roe was the wrong decision from the start.
“Roe was egregiously wrong from the start. Its reasoning was exceptionally weak, and the decision has had damaging consequences. And far from bringing about a national settlement of the abortion issue, Roe and Casey have enflamed debate and deepened division.”
Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan wrote a joint dissenting opinion. They said that millions of American women lost fundamental constitutional protection. Despite this dissent, the decision will stand.
The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade marks the end of decades of conservative efforts to curb abortion in the US. The overturning of Roe was made possible after Republicans blocked the confirmation of Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland as a Justice. Donald Trump was able to select three of his picks. Time will tell how this all plays out on a state-by-state basis, but reproductive freedom supporters across the nation will be disappointed in the decision.
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