The stringent 15-week abortion ban in Mississippi was upheld by the Supreme Court on Friday morning, overturning the precedent-setting Roe v. Wade judgment from 1973.
The ruling stated: ‘The Constitution does not confer a right to abortion; Roe and Casey are overruled; and the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives.’
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi immediately rebuked the decision, calling it a ‘slap in the face to women.’
‘The radical Supreme Court is eviscerating Americans’ rights and endangering their health and safety,’ the California Democrat said. ‘Today the Republican-controlled Supreme Court has achieved their dark, extreme goal of ripping away a woman’s right to make their own reproductive health decisions.’
‘Because of Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell, the Republican Party and their supermajority on the Supreme Court, American women today have less freedom than their mothers,’ she continued. ‘With Roe and their attempt to destroy it, radical Republicans are charging ahead with their crusade to criminalize health freedom.’
‘In the Congress, be aware of this, Republicans are plotting a nationwide abortion ban,’ Pelosi warned.
President Joe Biden will give a speech on the Dobbs decision at 12:30 on Friday, according to the White House.
Since a draft opinion of Dobbs, which indicated that the high court’s conservative majority was prepared to send the decision on whether abortion was legal back to the states, was leaked, tensions over the country’s future abortion rights have been on the rise.
With liberal justices Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, and Stephen Breyer dissenting, the 6-3 conservative majority upheld the draft’s conclusions. John Roberts, the Chief Justice, agreed. Clarence Thomas and Brett Kavanaugh, two conservative justices, also submitted a concurring opinion.
‘Guided by the history and tradition that map the essential components of the Nation’s concept of ordered liberty, the Court finds the Fourteenth Amendment clearly does not protect the right to an abortion,’ the decision, penned by conservative Justice Samuel Alito, said.
The verdict demonstrates the court’s startling shift in philosophy following Donald Trump’s four-year presidency. With the accession of Justice Amy Coney Barrett, who was approved by the GOP Senate in the wake of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s passing, the court changed from a 5-4 majority where Roberts was frequently the swing vote to a 6-3 conservative court.
After Antonin Scalia passed away, Senate Republicans opposed President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to take the justice’s place.
Even though Trump’s most recent court candidates all expressed support for the idea of stare decisis, or settled law, locking in the decades-old decision, the judgment rejected the idea.
‘The doctrine of stare decisis does not counsel continued acceptance of Roe and Casey,’ the majority argued, adding: ‘But stare decisis is not an inexorable command,’ it said.