Just days before an extremely controversial abortion case will be heard before the Supreme Court, a Dem. senator cautioned that a “revolution” could take place if the court was to overturn the existing precedent on abortions.
Speaking at a virtual media conference with the rest of the NH congressional delegation this week, Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) stated that a decision to overturn Roe v. Wade would both outrage the American people and turn back the clock on women’s rights.
“I hope the Supreme Court will listen to the people of America because, I think if you want to witness a revolution, then go ahead and outlaw Roe v. Wade and see what the public’s response is, particularly younger people,” Shaheen stated, referring to the WMUR-TV reporter Adam Sexton.
“I think that won’t be acceptable to young men or young women,” she added.
This week, the Supreme Court will hear any oral arguments for Dobbs v. Jackson, which has challenged a Mississippi law that bans abortions after being pregnant for 15 weeks, with some exceptions. The new law has been blocked by the lower courts on the basis that it unconstitutionally places restrictions on a woman’s right to have an abortion. Court precedent says that states can’t restrict abortion before the fetus is able to live outside the womb, which can happen as early as 22 weeks of pregnancy.
The Mississippi law was created to directly challenge the court precedent on abortions, with the hope that a majority of Republican-appointed justices will choose to overturn Roe v. Wade.
In a statement that was released before the media conference, Shaheen painted a dreadful picture of what the nation would look like without Roe’s precedent.
“I have lived the consequences of the pre-Roe v. wade era – I had friends in college that were forced to search for abortions in dangerous back alleys because women across the nation were denied any access to crucial family planning services. These Republican lawmakers can’t be allowed to turn the clock backwards on women’s reproductive rights and health, which is exactly what the Mississippi case is trying to do. It’s time to sound the alarm,” Shaheen stated. “Roe v. Wade is not just a decision that will impact women, their financial security and their health– it impacts many generations of families as well.”
Her colleague, Senator Maggie Hassan, added that Mississippi’s law is “the most extreme ban on abortion in the United States and it could take us back 50 years.”
On the other side of this issue, a lot of pro-life experts and legal scholars commenting on the case said Roe and the coming landmark decision on Planned Parenthood v. Casey should be overturned on moral, scientific, and legal grounds.
Grazie Pozo Christie, a policy adviser for the Catholic Association and diagnostic radiologist, said that the science backs the Mississippi’s 15-week statute.
“What’s perfectly apparent to the justices that are sitting on today’s court as well as the American people, are the humanity and liveliness of babies at 15 weeks of pregnancy — which is the age Mississippi proposes to protect babies from elective abortion. At this age, these fetuses are on average 6.4 inches in length and can weigh 4.1 ounces,” Christie wrote. “The baby can swallow and can even breathe. The heart is already fully formed at 15 weeks as well.”
While the case will be heard on December 1, a ruling from the court isn’t expected until next summer.
Author: Scott Dowdy