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US Court’s Historic Abortion Ruling

by | Sat, Jun 25 2022

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In an historic decision, the US Supreme Court has overturned its own landmark ruling in the case of Roe v Wade that legalised abortion in the United States nearly half a century ago.

The court’s six conservative justices concluded there is no constitutional right to an abortion.

Their majority opinion said: “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start. Its reasoning was exceptionally weak, and the decision has had damaging consequences. And far from bringing about a national settlement of the abortion issue …. it has enflamed debate and deepened division.”

“It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives (in the states).”

In a dissenting opinion the three liberal justices wrote: “The Court says that from the very moment of fertilisation, a woman has no rights to speak of. A State can force her to bring a pregnancy to term, even at the steepest personal and familial costs.”

The decision will escalate tensions in a deeply divided nation.

Reuters reports the reverberations potentially reshape the battlefield in November’s mid-term elections to determine whether President Joe Biden’s fellow Democrats retain control of Congress.

The ruling also signals a new openness by the conservative justices to change other long-recognised rights such as same-sex marriage.

Their decision was not unexpected after it was leaked earlier this year in relation to a challenge against a Mississippi law that bans abortion after 15-weeks of pregnancy.

At least 21 US states are now likely to ban abortion outright or severely restrict it, while at lease 16 states will continue to allow it.

Pro-life advocates celebrated the ruling, but pro-choice supporters expressed dismay and pledged to fight to restore the rights.

President Biden said: “It’s a sad day for the court and for the country. This decision must not be the final word.”

Former President Donald Trump who made key appointments to the Supreme Court said: “God made the decision.”