The Supreme Court has voted to strike down the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, according to an initial draft majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito circulated inside the court and obtained by POLITICO.
The draft opinion is a full-throated, unflinching repudiation of the 1973 decision which guaranteed federal constitutional protections of abortion rights and a subsequent 1992 decision – Planned Parenthood v. Casey – that largely maintained the right. “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start,” Alito writes:
“We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” he writes in the document, labeled as the “Opinion of the Court.” “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.”
If true, it is the most explosive thing to happen in that time.
In the meanwhile, we have this:
A person familiar with the court’s deliberations said that four of the other Republican-appointed justices – Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett – had voted with Alito in the conference held among the justices after hearing oral arguments in December, and that line-up remains unchanged as of this week.
But another is an unmistakable conclusion from the last fracas over his social life: Kavanaugh is a party animal. That in turn leads one to believe that Kavanaugh will never overturn Roe v. Wade outright. Why? Party animals, especially preppy ones, need abortion. At his level in society, such things are not moral issues to be decided but problems to be fixed. Abortion may be the final option available, but for such things option it is.
But, as of now, he has.
This is going to be ugly. But I am pleasantly surprised. It’s worth noting that the justices didn’t find a right to life in our Constitution, but plan to return the matter to the people’s elected representatives, both federal and state. Those elected representative have obtained a fifty year reprieve on the subject, as was the case with contraception. Our elected representatives hate topics like this, but this is what they’re paid to do, and it’s time they do it. Much of what is wrong with this Republic stems from the way the legislative branch has been able to hand off the hard decisions to the judiciary, and this is one less they can slough off.