(RightWing.org) – For nearly 50 years, conservatives have waited for this moment. It took a lot of time and strategy to put together a Supreme Court that could overturn the abortion precedent set in the 1973 Roe v. Wade case. On Monday, April 17, the US Supreme Court agreed to hear a case involving a Mississippi abortion law that would end abortions after 15 weeks.
While conservatives are elated at the prospects, liberals are in despair. It took eight months of deliberation before the high court agreed to hear the case starting in the next term that begins in October. The decision will come in the middle of the midterm elections and will likely galvanize Republican and Democratic voters.
What’s at Stake?
In 2018, Mississippi followed numerous other GOP-led states and began passing more restrictive abortion laws. The law would only allow an abortion up to 15 weeks gestation, except in the case of a medical emergency or severe fetal abnormality. The state argues that Roe v. Wade wrongly defined a fetus’ viability outside of a mother’s womb as the only reason to protect it from abortion. Additionally, Mississippi says that a human fetus beyond 15 weeks is advanced physiologically, and abortions past that point are riskier to pregnant women.
Abortion activist groups Emily’s List and the American Civil Liberties Union’s Reproductive Freedom Project contend that if the conservative Supreme Court rules for Mississippi, it will gut Roe v. Wade.
Even if Roe v. Wade isn’t completely gutted, it could pave the way for more abortion restrictions. Some GOP-led states are already considering abortion bans up to six weeks.
Court Shifted Right Under Trump
Former President Donald Trump appointed three conservative justices during his four-year term. The confirmations moved the court to the right with a 6-3 majority of Republican-appointed justices. Trump’s most recent appointee was Justice Amy Coney Barrett, a former Notre Dame professor, and her former colleagues are speaking out. Law professor Carter Snead might be offering a peek into Barrett’s thinking when he recently told the Wall Street Journal that it’s time to “finally end its failed and constitutionally unjustified experiment as the nation’s ad hoc abortion regulatory body of last resort.”
Two lower courts ruled against the Mississippi law. However, the Supreme Court is the only court that can overturn a previous high court precedent ruling.
The summer of 2022 ought to be politically heated as Democrats continue to threaten to pack the court, and midterm election campaigning is underway.
Don Purdum, Independent Political Analyst
Copyright 2021, RightWing.org