Leaked draft shows US court set to strike down abortion rights: Politico

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The Supreme Court is poised to strike down the right to abortion in the United States, according to a leaked draft of a majority opinion that would shred nearly 50 years of constitutional protections.

The draft, obtained by Politico, was written by Justice Samuel Alito, and has been circulated inside the conservative-dominated court, the news outlet reported.

“We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” Alito writes in the document, labeled as the “Opinion of the Court” and published on Politico’s website. “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.”

In a 1992 ruling, Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the court guaranteed a woman’s right to an abortion until the fetus is viable outside the womb, which is typically around 22 to 24 weeks of gestation.

Reproductive rights have been increasingly under threat in the United States in recent months as states have moved to tighten restrictions with some seeking to ban all abortions after six weeks, before many women even know they are pregnant.

In December, hearing oral arguments about a Mississippi law that would ban most abortions after 15 weeks, the Supreme Court’s conservative majority appeared inclined to not only uphold the law but to toss out Roe v. Wade.

The nine-member court, dominated by conservatives following the nomination of three justices by former president Donald Trump, is expected to issue a decision in the Mississippi case by June.

It said the three liberal justices on the court were working on a dissent and it was unknown how Chief Justice John Roberts would ultimately vote.

The leak of the draft opinion is extraordinary while a case is still being decided. Politico said it was the first time in modern history that a draft opinion had been disclosed publicly.

The Guttmacher Institute, a pro-choice research group, has said that 26 states are “certain or likely” to ban abortion if the Roe is overturned.

Planned Parenthood, which operates abortion clinics around the country, said the draft opinion is “outrageous” but cautioned that it “is not final.”

“While abortion is still legal, tonight’s report makes clear that our deepest fears are coming true,” it added. “We have reached a crisis moment for abortion access.”

Originally published as Leaked draft shows US court set to strike down abortion rights: Politico


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