6 Questions After SCOTUS Overturned Roe v. Wade: NPR

Thousands of abortion rights activists rally outside the US Supreme Court after it toppled the monument Roe vs. Wade case and erased a federal right to an abortion.

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6 Questions After SCOTUS Overturned Roe v. Wade: NPR

Thousands of abortion rights activists rally outside the US Supreme Court after it toppled the monument Roe vs. Wade case and erased a federal right to an abortion.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

It’s hard to overstate the significance of what the Supreme Court did on Friday with its outright reversal of Roe vs. Wadethe landmark decision that legalized abortion in this country almost 50 years ago.

“It’s the legal equivalent of a nuclear bomb,” noted Nina Totenberg of NPR, the doyen of Supreme Court reporting, adding that the decision may open the door to the potential “to undo other areas of personal autonomy”, from contraception to interracial marriage.

There are many questions we have about what is happening to society and politics now. Here are six:

1. What about access to abortion now?

The Supreme Court leaves it to the states to decide how to regulate – or prohibit – abortion. Twenty-two states have trigger laws in place that will immediately ban abortion.

Almost all of them are in red states, or places Donald Trump won in the presidential election. The United States will now have a patchwork of laws.

In red states whose legislatures are controlled by Republicans, an abortion is likely to be banned or made much harder to obtain.

And in blue states, where Democrats traditionally win presidential elections and control legislatures, abortion access will remain in place. This will lead to a very troubling series of new laws and regulations across the country.

2. Does the court go further, after other rights?

Judge Thomas wrote that he wanted the court to reconsider precedents on cases involving contraception, same-sex marriage and even gay sex.

Other conservative justices said they disagreed with it, but few thought the Supreme Court would even go that far and overturn it outright. deer.

One thing is clear, this is no longer the court of Chief Justice Roberts. He wrote a competing opinion advocating maintaining Mississippi’s 15-week ban, but not going beyond it.

The court’s conservative supermajority didn’t listen. This is their yard now. If they unite, it’s unclear how they can — and will — reshape American society and culture.

3. What will this mean for the credibility of the Supreme Court?

Public opinion has been clear and consistent – ​​a solid majority of Americans want abortion, with restrictions, to remain legal, but the Supreme Court opinion outright overrules deer is terribly out of step with the American public.

The credibility of the tribunal has diminished and opinion towards it has become polarized this year. With the escape of deer draft notice in May, he took a nose dive.

Gallup released figures on Thursday showing that only 25% now say they have “a lot” or “a lot” of confidence in the Supreme Court. This is the lowest in 50 years that Gallup has asked the question.

4. Will the idea of ​​removing the filibuster and filling the court become more mainstream?

Expect there to be a movement among progressives to add more justices to the court.

“The idea of ​​adding justices to the Supreme Court, who I thought had no footing to stand on, I think at some point, might have some success,” Totenberg noted.

Democrats don’t have the votes for that at this point. But given the tribunal’s credibility problem – and how much the reversal deer is with the general public – are these ideas starting to catch on?

5. How are Democrats and Liberals reacting more broadly?

It took half a century of meticulous planning, verification, and movement building to get to this point for anti-abortion conservatives.

They not only mobilized for presidential elections, but also for downvotes, such as state legislative elections. Democrats have built some device to participate in these races in recent years after being largely absent for a decade, before and during the Obama administration.

But with the relative young age of Supreme Court nominees and the Republican stranglehold on many state houses across the country, this is an aircraft carrier that’s likely to take a long time to turn around – certainly fine. longer than one or two election cycles.

6. Will this disrupt the 2022 elections?

While surveys show that deer being overturned would cause Democrats to outvote Republicans, the decision is unlikely to alter the House’s scrutiny forecast.

Republicans are favored to take the House and that is unlikely to change. So far, in the short term, people say they are more concerned about inflation and gas prices as motivators.

But this decision undoubtedly introduces a wild card. And it will be important to closely monitor the changing political landscape in the weeks to come.

This decision will affect not only this upcoming election, but also the next one – the 2024 presidential election. This is especially true given that former President Trump is the frontrunner for the GOP nomination, and that is because his Supreme Court nominations that day has arrived.

The world would have been very different if Hillary Clinton had won in 2016.


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