The state of Mississippi have pressed the U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday to uphold its ban on abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy and overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 decision that gave women the unfettered right to end a pregnancy before a fetus is viable outside the womb.
“Under the Constitution, may a State prohibit elective abortions before viability? Yes. Why? Because nothing in constitutional text, structure, history, or tradition supports a right to abortion,” the state says bluntly in its opening brief in a blockbuster case that will dominate the court’s next term. Republican Attorney General Lynn Fitch, who is leading the case, has declared outright that the time has come for the justices to discard long-standing precedent because Roe and Casey, a 1992 decision that reaffirmed the right to abortion access for women, are “egregiously wrong.”
“Roe and Casey are unprincipled decisions that have damaged the democratic process, poisoned our national discourse, plagued the law — and, in doing so, harmed this Court,” the brief says. A 7-2 majority concluded in Roe that women have the right to an abortion during the first and second trimesters but that states could impose restrictions in the second trimester.
Years later, in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the court allowed states to ban most abortions at viability, the point at which a fetus can survive outside the womb – roughly 24 weeks. “Roe and Casey are egregiously wrong,” lawyers for Mississippi told the court Thursday. “The conclusion that abortion is a constitutional right has no basis in text, structure, history, or tradition.”
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: DENVER7
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