US Supreme Court ends the right to abortion in a seismic ruling It overturned the landmark 1973 'Roe v Wade' decision stating that states could themselves permit or restrict the practice The US Supreme Court has killed the abortion rights that mark a seismic shift in the abortion law and will usher in new rules limiting or banning access to the procedure. The decision to undo nearly...
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US Supreme Court ends the right to abortion in a seismic ruling
It overturned the landmark 1973 'Roe v Wade' decision stating that states could themselves permit or restrict the practice
The US Supreme Court has killed the abortion rights that mark a seismic shift in the abortion law and will usher in new rules limiting or banning access to the procedure.
The decision to undo nearly 50 years of precedent will have sweeping ramifications for tens of millions of women across the country. This is because abortion rights are curtailed, particularly in GOP-led states in the South and Midwest, and this leads to a patchwork of laws absent in the constitutional protection.
With the Roe v Wade ruling, abortion will swiftly be outlawed in 13 states with the so-called "trigger laws" on the books.
The ruling came in a case involving a Mississippi law that banned abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The Court reversed the decision of the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals, which blocked the measure.
While Justice Samuel Alito delivered the court's verdict, he was supported by Justice Clarence Thomas, Justice Neil Gorsuch, Justice Brett Kavanaugh, and Justice Amy Coney Barrett.
Chief Justice John Roberts delivered a concurring opinion stating that while he agreed that the viability line established under Roe should be discarded and Mississippi's law upheld, Roe and Casey should be left untouched. However, the court's three liberal justices dissented.
Justice Alito wrote in his majority opinion, "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 (the) debate and deepened (the) division. It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people's elected representatives."
On an opposing note, Justice Stephen Breyer, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and Justice Elena Kagan, the court's liberal bloc declared, "With sorrow for this court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today, lost a fundamental constitutional protection, we dissent."
They wrote, "Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of today's decision is certain: the curtailment of women's rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens."
"Yesterday, the Constitution guaranteed that a woman confronted with an unplanned pregnancy could (within reasonable limits) make her own decision about whether to bear a child, with all the life-transforming consequences that the act involves. And in thus safeguarding each woman's reproductive freedom, the Constitution also protected the ability of women to participate equally in (this nation's) economic and social life. But no longer," they added.
The three liberal justices warned that the decision to overturn Roe and Casey would have consequences beyond the court's abortion precedents, putting other landmark decisions in jeopardy.
They stressed, "No one should be confident that this majority is done with its work. The right Roe and Casey recognized, does not stand alone."
"On the contrary, the court has linked it for decades to other settled freedoms involving bodily integrity, familial relationships, and procreation," they added.