The Supreme Court of the United States is preparing to overturn the historic judgment of 1973 in which it recognized the right to abortion, assured, late Monday evening, the newspaper “Politico”. In an article that caused a bombshell in Washington, the news outlet said it had obtained a draft majority decision written by conservative judge Samuel Alito and dated February 10.
According to this preliminary draft decision, Roe v. Wade, who ruled in 1973 that the U.S. Constitution protected a woman’s right to an abortion, is “completely unfounded from the start.” “We believe that Roe v. Wade must be overturned,” the conservative judge wrote. If this conclusion is accepted by the Court, the United States will return to the situation in force before 1973 when each State was free to prohibit or authorize abortions.
According to Judge Samuel Alito, “abortion is a profound moral question […] and the Constitution does not prohibit the citizens of each state from regulating or prohibiting abortion”. Therefore, “the inescapable conclusion is that the right to abortion is not deeply rooted in the history and traditions of the Nation” and it “is not protected by any provision of the Constitution”.
Without waiting for the official decision, around 200 abortion rights defenders met spontaneously on Monday evening in front of the building that houses the Supreme Court in Washington. Aside, a small group of opponents of abortion celebrated, for their part, the announced end of the Roe vs. Wade.
Enshrine the right to abortion in law
Equally divided, the political class also reacted strongly to the Politico article. Several elected Democrats felt that it confirmed “the urgency” of enshrining the right to abortion in law. “We must protect the right to choose and enshrine Roe V. Wade in law,” tweeted Senator Amy Klobuchar. A proposal to that effect passed the House of Representatives but is bogged down in the Senate due to fierce Republican opposition.
On the contrary, they hailed a long-awaited victory. “This is the best and most important news of our lives,” commented Representative Marjorie Taylor Green, while her colleague Josh Hawley called on the Court to publish its judgment “immediately”.
A Court revamped by Donald Trump
In any case, this preliminary draft is consistent with the way in which the Supreme Court has been profoundly overhauled by former Republican President Donald Trump who, in five years, brought in three magistrates, solidifying his conservative majority (six judges out of nine). Since September, this new Court has sent several favorable signals to opponents of abortion.
She initially refused to prevent the entry into force of a Texas law which limits the right to an abortion to the first six weeks of pregnancy against two trimesters under the current legal framework. During the December review of a Mississippi law, which also questioned the legal deadline for an abortion, a majority of its magistrates made it clear that they were ready to nibble or even simply overturn Roe v. Wade.