Leak Shows SCOTUS May Overturn Roe

News: US News
by David Nussman  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  May 3, 2022   

Draft says past abortion rulings 'must be overruled'

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WASHINGTON (ChurchMilitant.com) - All eyes are on the U.S. Supreme Court after a leak revealed the justices may be overturning Roe v. Wade.

Justice Samuel Alito

Monday night Politico published a leaked draft for what could be the majority opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health — a case pertaining to a Mississippi pro-life law banning abortion after 15 weeks. The document, circulated internally in the Supreme Court in February, is authored by Associate Justice Samuel Alito, who was nominated to the high court by George W. Bush. Alito is a devout Catholic.

Politico also reported Justices Amy Coney Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh, Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas voted with Alito "in the conference held among the justices after hearing oral arguments in December" — providing the five needed for a majority in the nine-person court.

Someone leaked the draft, almost certainly to pressure the justices to change their views.

"We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled," Alito writes in the draft, referring to 1973's Roe v. Wade and 1992's Planned Parenthood v. Casey. "The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision."

The draft notes:

Roe's defenders characterize the abortion right as similar to the rights recognized in past decisions involving matters such as intimate sexual relations, contraception, and marriage, but abortion is fundamentally different, as both Roe and Casey acknowledge, because it destroys what those decisions called "fetal life" and what the law now before us describes as an "unborn human being."

A later portion reads, "The Constitution does not prohibit the citizens of each State from regulating or prohibiting abortion. Roe and Casey arrogated that authority. We now overrule those decisions and return that authority to the people and their elected representatives."

Chief Justice John Roberts

Chief Justice John Roberts remains a wild card. Politico claims how Roberts will vote on Dobbs is "unclear."

Commentators believe the leak of Alito's draft is a political move by leftists, hoping to pressure pro-life justices into changing their minds.

Kathryn Jean Lopez of National Review opined, "It's shocking. Not that the Supreme Court would overturn Roe, but that someone would presumably leak a draft opinion (we don't know if it is the current one) to change the ruling."

Likewise, The Federalist's editor-in-chief Mollie Hemingway wrote, "Someone leaked the draft, almost certainly to pressure the justices to change their views."

The Vortex: Fighting for Life

"Those who care about norms, decorum, civility, institutions and rule of law — or claim to — must hold the leaker and any coconspirators fully accountable for this egregious breach," Hemingway argued. "At the very least, they should be disbarred. Criminal charges might also be in order."

Pro-abortion protesters gathered outside the Supreme Court Monday night and early Tuesday, with pro-life counterprotesters also demonstrating.

Some are calling for caution about the veracity of Politico's reporting, pending the release of more information.

"We certainly should be skeptical of big leaks such as this one," wrote Alexandra DeSanctis for National Review, "not to mention reports that are entirely anonymously sourced — and doubly so when the topic is as radioactive as the possible overturning of the Court's abortion jurisprudence."

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