A SCOTUS Live blog at the end of Roe v. Wade
The Supreme Court, full of conservatives, will hear arguments in the the largest abortion case in decades this morning. At the heart of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization is a Abortion ban for 15 weeks adopted by the State of Mississippi in March 2018. But because of the machinations of the Supreme Court, the arguments are challenge the legality of abortion as we all know.
Judges don’t like to be painted in a box with only choices of either or, but that’s exactly what the state of Mississippi asked these nine lawyers to consider. the question at hand is “if all pre-viability bans on elective abortions are unconstitutional”. (Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in an opinion in June 2020 that he sided with abortion precedents because he had not been explicitly asked to comment on the “Constitutional validity” abortion laws. Everything has a true you made this bed, sir energy to her.)
Julie Rikelman of the Center for Reproductive Rights will advocate for the Jackson Women’s Health Organization, Mississippi’s last abortion clinic, and United States Solicitor General Elizabeth Prelogar will represent the United States government. Scott Stewart, the state solicitor general, will advocate for Mississippi’s abortion ban.
Last month’s arguments for SB 8, Texas’ six-week abortion ban, hung in the air in the building engraved with “Equal Justice Under Law”. It was more than 80 days since the entry into force of the cruel law, sending abortion patients out of state en masse. Between the arguments of Dobbs and SB 8, abortion clinics are on hold, packed with too many patients for too few appointment slots, wondering if the trigger bans (laws written to ban abortion if Roe vs. Wade falls) will snap into place.
Caitlin Cruz de Jezebel reports from the steps of the Supreme Court in Washington, DC, and Susan Rinkunas follows from New York.
8:54 am: The rally on the steps of the Supreme Court has begun. It is organized by Free abortion, a new collective of 117 pro-abortion groups announced this week. Nancy Northup, CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights, spoke before heading into the building to chat. “Today will be the fourth time in six years that the Center for Reproductive Rights Lawyers has argued before the Supreme Court to protect abortion rights,” she told a crowd of passionate activists. “Four trips to the Supreme Court in six years is too much.”
9:42 am: Members of Congress call for federal abortion protections Democratic Reps Diana DeGette (CO), Barbara Lee (CA) and Pramila Jayapal (WA) spoke to the assembled pro-abortion activists. Lee has talked about having an abortion before Roe deer was decided and chairs the Pro-Choice Caucus in Congress with DeGette. Jayapal became moved as she remembered her decision. “The consequences of this choice are the things we live with,” she said. “It’s not about health care. It’s about controlling our bodies … Don’t criminalize me and millions of women like me across the country. Don’t criminalize those who help us. Don’t criminalize clinics and doctors, ”she said. All speakers mentioned the Women’s Health Protection Act, which would codify the right to abortion into federal law, but only Jayapal said repealing the filibuster is key to the fight for it. ‘abortion. The WHPA has been passed in the House, but is idling in the Senate. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) immediately reminded the crowd that the right to privacy is granted by the Connecticut Supreme Court cases. He said it was also time to pass the WHPA in the Senate.
10:16 am: In his opening statements, Mississippi attorney Scott Stewart asked the court not only to uphold the state-imposed 15-week ban, but also to overturn Roe deer and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. Stewart also referred to fetuses using female pronouns, which aligns with the anti-abortion movement’s efforts to claim that abortion is anti-feminist and harms women. Some court observers suspect that Judge Amy Coney Barrett will write the majority opinion in the case by supporting the law as if to protect the court from criticism for a woman restricting her reproductive rights.
10:30 am: The biggest applause outside for Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) as oral arguments continue inside the building: “No one is free until everyone is free. For the first time in 40 years, the House passed a budget without the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal dollars from being spent on abortion.
10:49 am: As Judge Sotomayor wiped his tongue with Stewart for ignoring the fact that childbirth is 14 times more risky for the lives of pregnant women than abortion, Judge Samuel Alito decided to ask a revealing question: “There is Are there lay philosophers and bioethicists who take the position that human rights begin at conception, or at some point other than sustainability? Alito is alluding to the endgame here, which is the personality under the 14th Amendment, which would ban all abortions, jeopardize fertility treatments like IVF, possibly ban some forms of birth control, and criminalize pregnancy outcomes such as miscarriages and stillbirths.
11:55 am: Chief Justice John Roberts argued that allowing a ban on abortion at 15 weeks was not a “dramatic departure” from the current standard for states to ban abortion at viability, this which is about two months later. He also noted that the United States shares the viability line with countries like China and North Korea, a right-wing whistle. It is technically true that many countries restrict abortion earlier than the United States, but many of those same countries have heavy duty safety nets including universal health care that covers birth control and abortion, several months of paid parental leave, and childcare subsidies. Julie Rikelman, the Mississippi clinic lawyer challenging the ban, told Roberts he was wrong.
12:10 p.m .: The Mississippi attorney closed the arguments with a brief rebuttal in which he said it was okay for the court to overturn Roe deer because people can give up their newborn baby under shelter laws, and because effective contraceptives are now widely available and cheaper than an abortion. Never mind that Republicans also oppose forcing insurance companies to cover birth control. Useful! It looked like the court would uphold the 15-week ban and maybe even overturn Roe deer, but we do not expect a decision in this case until the end of June 2022, around four months before the midterm elections.