The Guardian Weekly - UK (2022-05-06)

(EriveltonMoraes) #1

The Guardian Weekly 6 May 2022


20 Spotlight


T


he US supreme court has pro-
visionally voted to overturn
Roe v Wade, the landmark
ruling that legalised abortion
nationwide in America, according to a
draft opinion reported on by Politico.
In what appeared to be a stunning
and unprecedented leak, Politico said
on Monday evening it had obtained
an initial majority opinion written by
Justice Samuel Alito and circulated in
the court on 10 February.
The opinion strikes down Roe v
Wade, the court’s 1973 ruling that
enshrined the constitutional right to
abortion, and a subsequent 1992 deci-
sion – Planned Parenthood v Casey –
that largely upheld that right.
Alito is quoted as saying: “Roe was
egregiously wrong from the start. Its
reasoning was exceptionally weak,
and the decision has had damaging

Pro-choice activists rally at the
supreme court on Monday night
ALLISON BAILEY/NURPHOTO/REX

North America


UNITED STATES


Abortion rights crisis


Leaked report says


supreme court will


overturn Roe v Wade


Protests grow after unprecedented release of


draft document that says judges voted 6-3 to


reverse 1973 ruling and push power to states


By David Smith WASHINGTON


consequences. And far from bring-
ing about a national settlement of
the abortion issue, Roe and Casey
have enfl amed debate and deepened
division.”
The justice adds: “We hold that Roe
and Casey must be overruled. It is time
to heed the constitution and return
the issue of abortion to the people’s
elected representatives.”
Four of the other Republican-
appointed justices – Clarence Thomas,
Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and
Amy Coney Barrett – voted with Alito
in the conference held among the
justices, the article added.
After an initial vote among the
justices following the oral argument,
one is assigned the majority opinion
and writes a draft. It is then circu-
lated among the justices. At times, in
between the initial vote and the ruling
being released, the vote alignment can
change. A ruling is only fi nal when it
is published by the court.
But if, as expected, it is adopted, the
decision would rule in favour of Mis-
sissippi in a highly consequential case
about that state’s attempt to ban most
abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.
That would sound the death knell for
the half-century guarantee of nation-
wide protection of reproductive rights
and allow each state to decide whether
to restrict or ban abortion.
Several Republican-led states
have already passed highly restric-
tive abortion laws in anticipation of
such a ruling by the supreme court,
which, thanks to three appointments
by Donald Trump, has a 6-3 conserva-
tive majority.
Politico said it received a copy of the
98-page draft opinion from a person
familiar with the court’s proceedings
in the Mississippi case.
The supreme court declined to con-
fi rm what would be the worst security
breach in its history – regarding one
of its most consequential rulings in
decades that is sure to enfl ame Amer-
ica’s deep political divisions. After the
story broke, footage posted to social
media showed a crowd of protesters
gathering outside the supreme court
late on Monday night, waving signs
and chanting: “ My body, my choice. ”
Neal Katyal, a former US acting
solicitor general who has argued
many cases before the supreme court,
tweeted : “I’ve quickly scanned the
draft opinion and it appears legitimate.
This means there was a preliminary
vote to fully overrule Roe v Wade and

Polling has
shown that
relatively few
Americans
want to see
Roe v Wade
overturned.
In 2020, AP
VoteCast found
that 69% of
voters in the
presidential
election said the
supreme court
should leave the
decision as is;
just 29% said
the court should
overturn the
decision.

Public view
Fe w want law
overturned
Free download pdf