UNITED STATES NEWS

Possible overturning of Roe sends abortion fight to states

May 3, 2022, 8:22 AM | Updated: 9:07 pm
Demonstrators protest outside of the U.S. Supreme Court Tuesday, May 3, 2022 in Washington. A draft...

Demonstrators protest outside of the U.S. Supreme Court Tuesday, May 3, 2022 in Washington. A draft opinion suggests the U.S. Supreme Court could be poised to overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade case that legalized abortion nationwide, according to a Politico report released Monday. Whatever the outcome, the Politico report represents an extremely rare breach of the court's secretive deliberation process, and on a case of surpassing importance. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

(AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

The bombshell leak of a draft opinion suggesting the Supreme Court is poised to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade case legalizing abortion nationwide has set the country on course for an even more polarized and fluctuating landscape of abortion rights.

Almost immediately, Republicans who had fostered a decades-long push to end abortion rights cheered Roe’s potential fall. Democrats vowed to fight the possible loss of a constitutional right that has been in place for nearly a half-century.

The Supreme Court confirmed the leaked draft, first published by Politico, was an authentic document but said Tuesday “it does not represent a decision by the court or the final position of any member on the issues in the case.”

Though the draft opinion could change, Democrats and Republicans across the states pledged action amid warnings such a ruling could also put other rights at risk –battles that could likewise play out in the states.

In California, Democrats who wield control of the state Legislature and the governor’s office issued a joint statement late Monday announcing they would seek to amend the state’s constitution to enshrine abortion rights.

“California will not stand idly by as women across America are stripped of their rights and the progress so many have fought for gets erased,” California Democrats said. “We know we can’t trust the Supreme Court to protect reproductive rights, so California will build a firewall around this right in our state constitution. Women will remain protected here.”

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, a Republican, said on Twitter she plans to immediately call a special legislative session “to save lives” if Roe is overturned. The state already has a so-called trigger law that would make abortion illegal if that happens and Noem’s office declined to say why a special session would be necessary. Her spokesman, Ian Fury, said the tweet, “speaks for itself.”

In Georgia, which is among several dozen states electing governors this year, candidates on both sides of the aisle proclaimed they would prioritize the issue if elected to the state’s top office.

Republican gubernatorial candidate David Perdue said he’d call state lawmakers into a special session to outlaw all abortions, while Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams said she would defend the right to abortion if she wins.

About half of U.S. states are expected to ban abortion if Roe falls, according to the abortion-rights think tank Guttmacher Institute. Twenty-two states, largely in the South and Midwest, already have total or near-total bans on the books. Aside from Texas, all are now blocked because of Roe.

States have already been preparing for the protentional of the ruling being weakened or overturned, and Republican-led states have also been working to restrict access to medication abortion, which would allow women to get abortions without the burden of traveling to clinics that may be few and far between.

In addition to South Dakota, 12 other states have trigger laws that would immediately ban abortion if Roe is overturned.

One is Oklahoma, where Republican House Speaker Charles McCall declared Tuesday that “decades of steadfast prayer and unwavering legislative efforts to protect the lives of the unborn are finally on the doorsteps of success.”

“For close to 50 years, the silent cries of the millions who lost their lives before even having a chance to live have been heard through the voices of those of us fighting for their rights,” McCall said. “The pro-life movement won, securing those yet unborn the future and promise that comes with being born in the United States of America.”

A few states still have pre-Roe bans on the books, including Michigan, where Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has sued to remove it and pledged on Twitter Monday to “fight like hell to make sure abortion remains safe, legal, and accessible.”

The Kansas Supreme Court in 2019 declared that the state constitution protects abortion rights, but Republican lawmakers placed on the August primary ballot an initiative to overturn it.

In New Hampshire, Gov. Chris Sununu was a rare Republican governor who said he supports abortion rights and was committed to upholding Roe v. Wade. “So long as I am governor, these health care services for women will remain safe and legal,” Sununu said.

However, last year Sununu signed into law restrictions on abortion when he approved a measure banning abortion after 24 weeks of gestation, with exceptions only for pregnancies that threaten the mother’s life or health.

Polling shows relatively few Americans want to see Roe overturned. In 2020, AP VoteCast found that 69% of voters in the presidential election said the Supreme Court should leave the Roe v. Wade decision as is; just 29% said the court should overturn the decision. In general, AP-NORC polling finds a majority of the public favors abortion being legal in most or all cases.

At least eight GOP-led states have already passed new restrictions this year, expecting change from the conservative majority on the high court. Arizona and Florida banned the procedure after 15 weeks, without exceptions for rape or incest. Others, like Oklahoma, went further and made it a felony as of this summer to perform an abortion, with an exception only for the life of the mother.

Idaho followed Texas and allowed people to sue over abortions — including potential family members of the embryo.

Sixteen states and the District of Columbia, meanwhile, have protected access to abortion in state law, and several states moved to expand or strengthen those protections this year.

States like Washington and Connecticut, for example, have protected abortion providers in their states from lawsuits.

The Democratic leaders in Connecticut’s statehouse, which over the weekend sent legislation to that state’s governor that would protect abortion providers, said in a joint statement Monday night they had feared a proposed decision like the one in the draft opinion and “now this nightmare appears to be all too real.”

“America is likely headed down a dark path where individual states will adopt conflicting statutes leading to additional divisions in an already divided nation,” Senate President Pro Tempore Martin Looney and Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff said.

Democratic New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said her state would “welcome with open arms” those who need access to abortion.

In Hawaii, state Sen. Roz Baker, a Democrat, questioned what more the ruling, if issued by the court, could bring.

“Are they going to go back and go after the LGBTQ community next?” she said. “Are they going to go after immigrants? Are they going to go after any of the vulnerable populations?”

In some cases, abortion laws may divide states as well.

GOP-led Tennessee also has a trigger law banning abortion if Roe is overturned, but Nashville’s district attorney on Monday tweeted that he would not prosecute any doctor who performed an abortion.

__

Associated Press reporters around the country contributed to this report.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

United States News

Associated Press

Why captions are suddenly everywhere and how they got there

NEW YORK (AP) — People with hearing loss have a new ally in their efforts to navigate the world: Captions that aren’t limited to their television screens and streaming services. The COVID pandemic disrupted daily life for people everywhere, but many of those with hearing loss took the resulting isolation especially hard. “When everyone wears […]
1 hour ago
FILE - Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen arrives to meet with Irish Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe ...
Associated Press

EXPLAINER: What’s the impact of a Russian debt default?

Russia is poised to default on its foreign debt for the first time since the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, further alienating the country from the global financial system following sanctions imposed over its war in Ukraine. A 30-day grace period on interest payments originally due May 27 expired Sunday. But it could take time to confirm […]
1 day ago
FILE - Republican candidate for Illinois governor Richard Irvin speaks with employees during a tour...
Associated Press

What to watch in primaries in Colorado, Illinois, elsewhere

NEW YORK (AP) — Seven states are set to host primary elections Tuesday as the nation comes to terms with last week’s stunning Supreme Court ruling eliminating the constitutional right to an abortion. This week’s nominating contests could offer the first clues as to whether the political landscape has shifted. Abortion is particularly relevant in […]
1 day ago
FILE - Andrew Giuliani, left, a Republican candidate for Governor of New York, is joined by his fat...
Associated Press

Andrew Giuliani invokes famous dad in bid for NY governor

NEW YORK (AP) — After 2020, Rudy Giuliani is not someone most politicians would summon to hold a news conference on their behalf. As the frontman of former President Donald Trump’s false claims of election fraud, Giuliani made notorious appearances before cameras where he espoused baseless theories — once while doing an impression of actor […]
1 day ago
FILE - A person waits in line to vote in the Georgia's primary election on May 24, 2022, in Atlanta...
Associated Press

More than 1 million voters switch to GOP in warning for Dems

WASHINGTON (AP) — A political shift is beginning to take hold across the U.S. as tens of thousands of suburban swing voters who helped fuel the Democratic Party’s gains in recent years are becoming Republicans. More than 1 million voters across 43 states have switched to the Republican Party over the last year, according to […]
1 day ago
President Joe Biden, right, walks with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, center, ...
Associated Press

Tale of 2 summits: ‘America’s back’ to America’s backsliding

ELMAU, Germany (AP) — One year ago, Joe Biden strode into his first Group of Seven summit as president and confidently told the closest U.S. allies that “America is Back.” Now, many of them are worrying that America is backsliding. As Biden meets this week in the Bavarian Alps with the heads of G-7 leading […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

...
CANVAS ANNUITY

Best retirement savings rates hit 4.30%

Maximize your retirement savings with guaranteed fixed rates up to 4.30%. Did you know there is a financial product that can give you great interest rates as you build your retirement savings and provide you with a paycheck for life once you retire? It might sound too good to be true but it is not; this product is called an annuity.
...
Day & Night Air

Tips to lower your energy bill in the Arizona heat

Does your summer electric bill make you groan? Are you looking for effective ways to reduce your bill?
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

ADHS mobile program brings COVID-19 vaccines and boosters to Arizonans

The Arizona Department of Health Services and partner agencies are providing even more widespread availability by making COVID-19 vaccines available in neighborhoods through trusted community partners.
Possible overturning of Roe sends abortion fight to states