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The Senate Approved Justices to Overturn Roe. How Will Voters Respond?

It was the alliance between Senate Republicans and President Trump to approve conservative judges and reshape the federal judiciary that prepared the path for the Supreme Court’s monumental decision to eliminate the constitutional right to abortion.

Mitch McConnell, the head of the Senate’s Republican caucus, initiated the plan by delaying President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland and altering the Senate’s procedures to facilitate the confirmation of President Donald Trump’s nominees.

It was a protracted game designed to secure a conservative majority on the court for decades. Trump and McConnell needed the support of nearly all Republican senators to remake the bench; they could not have done so on their own.

Now, Republicans are heading into a midterm election in November that is likely to quickly become a referendum on the court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, as voters decide which party will control Congress.

Republicans seek to impose additional restrictions, including a nationwide ban on abortions, while Democrats pledge legislation to protect abortion access.

On a conference call with reporters on Friday, Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Missouri, proclaimed, “We are going to retake the Senate in November, and we are going to hold it for a long time.”


Control of Congress is at stake, thus the stakes are high. With a poor support rating for Vice President Joe Biden and a bleak economy marked by rising gas prices and other indicators of inflation, the Republicans are expected to gain seats in both chambers and regain control.

As a result of Vice President Kamala Harris’ ability to vote in the event of a tie, Democrats enjoy a razor-thin margin in the House and barely maintain a majority in the Senate, which is evenly split 50-50.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi warned that Republicans will be held accountable for their actions and that, if they win control of Congress, they are contemplating far more severe measures, such as a nationwide ban on abortion.

Pelosi stated, “This conduct cannot be permitted.” In November, the rights of all Americans, including women, will be on the ballot.

Before Trump’s election, Congress had reached an uneasy truce with the nation’s abortion battles. In Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the Supreme Court upheld the constitutional right to abortion access.

Legislation erupted occasionally, but there were few House and Senate majorities strong enough to overturn established law.

But McConnell put his plans for a conservative judiciary in motion in early 2016, well before Trump was elected president. He declined to consider Obama’s candidate to fill the vacancy left by the untimely death of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia in February.

He was aware of the influence abortion and other issues have on conservative voters. McConnell contended that the timing was too close to the November election.

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It was a bold and cunning political move. McConnell made a hasty choice just as the Republican presidential candidates were ready to enter the stage for a discussion preceding the South Carolina primary, setting the tone for the Republican Party.

Democrats, incensed, pushed forward Obama’s nomination of Garland, only to have Senate majority leader McConnell deny consideration of it. Trump won the November presidential election in part by pledging to nominate a conservative in the style of the late Scalia to the vacant Supreme Court seat.

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