Politico

Supreme Court sets Dec. 1 for arguments in challenge to Roe v. Wade


The Supreme Court on Monday set Dec. 1 arguments on Mississippi’s ban on abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy — a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade.

Mississippi’s ban has been blocked by lower courts because it directly violates Roe’s protections for pre-viability abortions. The hearing would come after justices this month allowed Texas to move forward with a near-total abortion ban.

In taking the Mississippi case, the Supreme Court’s conservative supermajority clearly signaled its openness to revisiting and potentially overturning the landmark 1973 decision that legalized abortion nationwide, with a ruling expected next year. Justices said they want to hear arguments on whether all bans on abortion before a fetus can survive outside the womb are unconstitutional.

Earlier this summer, Mississippi petitioned the court to overturn Roe, contradicting the state’s previous argument that it could uphold the 15-week ban without touching the nearly 50-year-old precedent.

Since then, a flood of legal briefs have flowed in from groups on both sides of the case.

Jonathan F. Mitchell, the architect of Texas’ abortion ban, submitted his own brief over the weekend pushing the court to not only overturn Roe but other precedents protecting abortion access and what he calls “court-invented rights to homosexual behavior and same-sex marriage.”

In an amicus brief filed on Monday, Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers submitted testimony to the court on “the grave consequences of banning abortion before viability,” citing anecdotes from clinics about the impact of Texas and other states attempting to temporarily halt abortions during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Thousands of individuals who have had abortions also submitted a brief on Monday, sharing stories of how terminating pregnancies helped them avoid going on public assistance, escape abusive relationships and continue their educations.

The Biden administration, which is aggressively fighting the Texas law, is expected to file its own brief with the court later Monday opposing the Mississippi ban.

A ruling in the case is likely to come down next summer — just a few months ahead of midterm elections that will decide control of Congress.

The justices have also scheduled arguments for a narrower, more technical abortion case for Oct. 12, focusing on which state officials can defend abortion bans in court.

Continue

About the author

Lisa

Leave a Comment