On Wednesday (Dec 1) The Supreme Court announced it was one step closer to making a decision on what would undoubtedly be a historic shift in its abortion jurisprudence following hours of deliberations from state lawyers, a Mississippi abortion provider and the current presidential administration.
The Mississippi law that bans abortion after 15 weeks, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, followed the framework established by Roe V. Wade, which states that women have a constitutional right to terminate a pregnancy in the first two trimesters, when a fetus cannot survive outside the womb, which is typically between 22 and 24 weeks.
Mississippi is seeking to overturn all of its previous abortion decisions and to return the abortion question to the states.
Prior to the today’s Supreme Court announcement, former Vice President Mike Pence called for Roe V. Wade to be overturned.
Abortion bans before viability, such as the one passed by Mississippi, have been consistently held unconstitutional. Yet conservative lawmakers continue to spend more time and resources trying to gut legal protections and established rights than ensuring people have access to their basic needs.
“For over a decade, we have seen a group of well-funded anti-abortion state legislators introduce and pass strategic policies that chip away at abortion access,” said Jennifer Driver, senior director of reproductive rights for the State Innovation Exchange. Driver pointed to laws in 11 states that trigger an abortion ban if Roe is overturned. Over 20 states have laws that forbid abortion outright in the event federal law changes.
With so much on the line, it will likely take months before the case is decided.
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