Abortion is referred to as “a deep moral matter on which Americans hold profoundly different opinions” in the Supreme Court judgment that overturned Roe v. Wade.
But for the majority of Americans, the decision on Friday made it further clearer that abortion is no longer primarily a moral issue but rather a political one. This decision returns the decision on how to regulate abortion to the states, ushering in a new and even more divisive political age.
Both sides were preparing for future battles as they took in the news, which was as shocking as it had been foretold.
James Bopp Jr., general counsel for the National Right to Life Committee, who has fought against abortion since the Roe decision in 1973, declared that the judgment was “a complete win for the pro-life cause and for America.” “I’m thrilled that the bloodshed will stop.”
When the decision was made, Bopp, who was present at the committee’s conference in Atlanta, remarked that the anti-abortion movement’s task was “half-done.” The organization is now advocating model legislation to outlaw abortion in all states, with the only exceptions being hazards to the woman’s life.
There will be a variety of forces working against us, so it will be a very difficult challenge, he added. “As Churchill famously remarked, this is the conclusion of the beginning. Now that a significant barrier has been lifted, we will make sure that the legislation is applied to safeguard the unborn.
The president of NARAL, Mini Timmaraju, expressed worry for the millions of women in areas where abortion was immediately outlawed or where access to the procedure will be significantly more challenging. NARAL has battled for the liberalization of abortion law since the 1960s. It will have a disastrous effect on actual people’s lives, she said.
Although this choice represents the worst possible outcome, she insisted that the conflict will still continue. Extremist politicians will discover: “When you come for our rights, we come for your seats” since there will be an election in November.
“The Supreme Court has now officially given politicians permission to control what we do with our bodies, deciding that we can no longer be trusted to determine the course for our own lives,” said Alexis McGill Johnson, the president of Planned Parenthood, long the most well-known abortion provider in the nation.
With ever-tighter regulations that have essentially rendered abortion unavailable to millions of women throughout the country, state lawmakers have been preparing for the court’s decision for months, if not years. The judgment on Friday, which was hinted at during oral arguments in December and once again when a draft ruling was leaked in May, resulted in nearly absolute restrictions on abortion in 13 states. Within 15 minutes following the court’s announcement, the attorney general of Missouri issued an opinion outlawing abortion.
The decision provided an instant split-screen vision of a divided country. There was joy and relief on one side, indignation and anguish on the other, from the halls of Congress to the masses on the steps of the Supreme Court to citizens traveling to work across the nation.
Sen. Mitch McConnell, the head of the Republican Party who has influenced courts to overturn Roe, praised the decision as “courageous and proper.”
To achieve today’s historic wins for the rule of law and for innocent life, “millions of Americans have spent a half-century praying, marching, and working,” McConnell said. Throughout our arduous path, I have been pleased to stand with them, and now, I rejoice alongside them.
Louis Monnig, an obstetrician and gynecologist in Louisville, Kentucky, where McConnell hails from, was refreshing his social media page when he learned of the decision. He remarked, “I feel like a dear friend of mine has passed away.
Knowing that his state’s trigger law would immediately make abortion illegal, he was on his way to work. To come up with ideas on how to address patients’ demands, he had already started messaging his colleagues. I felt ethically obligated to be a part of this and to give treatment for all aspects of the reproductive health spectrum, so that’s one reason I got into obstetrics and gynecology, he added.
Like Monnig, millions of Americans have never experienced life without the constitutional right to an abortion. Mallorie McBride of Kansas City, Missouri, described her reaction to the Supreme Court ruling as “shocked and frightened.”
She lamented, “We’re going back so far.” I’ve always thought that older guys shouldn’t decide what women’s bodies should look like. I haven’t felt particularly represented by my government as a young, single woman in my 20s in a while, but this goes beyond.
Over the past ten years, the politics around abortion have been hotter and more polarizing, mirroring the growing division of the nation. Justice Samuel Alito claimed that Roe v. Wade had “sparked a national conflict that has inflamed our political culture for a half-century” in the Supreme Court. However, overturning Roe and putting the decision on abortion back in the hands of the states looked certain to exacerbate political resentment.
The ruling still leaves too much room for states like his, which are mostly headed by Democrats, to legalize abortion, according to Troy Newman, the president of Kansas-based Operation Rescue, which organized a protracted campaign of blockades outside abortion facilities.
The pro-life movement needs to “pull up our big-boy boots” and take the remaining states, he declared. “We will be cleaning up, closing down the last filthy, abhorrent abortion factories.”
“I think God has had his hands in this from the very beginning,” said Becky Currie, a Republican state lawmaker from Mississippi who drafted the state’s abortion laws that led to the court’s ruling. We should all have a good day today.
The job now starts, she remarked. To ensure sure birth control is available for them, we must be present. For newborns to be adopted, we must ensure that there are homes available.
Stacey Margaret Jones, 52, of Conway, Arkansas, claimed that she frequently thought about the women she met while volunteering at Planned Parenthood.
Jones added, “I feel so hopeless because I feel like there’s nothing I could have done better. She has participated in marches, given to candidates who favor abortion rights and written to her politicians.
She does not, however, believe that her voice is heard in a conservative state like Arkansas. Jason Rapert, a leading supporter of the Arkansas abortion trigger law that forbade the practice after the court’s ruling, is her state legislator.
To say, “OK, we knew this might happen and this is what we’re going to do,” Jones added, “I’m seeking advice from someone or some group.”