The Supreme Court is not done weighing in on abortion as a litany of potential cases might still be to come, The New York Times reported Monday.
There are at least 16 abortion cases in U.S. appeals courts, according to Planned Parenthood Federation of America lawyers. U.S. Court of Appeals is the last step before the Supreme Court takes up hearing a case.
Monday’s Supreme Court ruling striking down a Louisiana law that required doctors performing abortions to have a sometimes difficult-to-obtain formal affiliation called “admitting privileges” at a hospital within 30 miles (48 km) of the clinic.
It was just one example of a number of states in the South and Midwest that have worked to break down the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that settled the court’s opinion on a women’s right to choose to have an abortion. Five states have just one abortion clinic left, per the report: Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, and West Virginia.
The battle comes in an election year, as President Donald Trump has a pro-life platform against presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, who is decidedly pro choice. It was through Trump had turned the Supreme Court to a conservative lean, but Chief Justice John Roberts – a George W. Bush appointee and frequent Trump critic – has sided with the court’s liberal minority in a number of important cases of late.
“It is imperative that we re-elect President Trump and our pro-life majority in the U.S. Senate so we can further restore the judiciary, most especially the Supreme Court,” Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony List, an anti-abortion group, told the Times.
“President Trump, assisted by the pro-life Senate majority, is keeping his promise to appoint constitutionalist Supreme Court justices and other federal judges.”
Trump had seen his polling numbers decline among evangelicals and Catholics versus Biden. A Biden election victory would help turn the Supreme Court convincingly back to the left.
The abortion-rights movement celebrated a victory Monday in the ruling, but warned more is to come.
“This is great news, but the battle continues, folks,” NARAL Pro-Choice America President Ilyse Hogue tweeted. “As long as Kavanaugh is on the bench, our rights are on the line — and we need your help to flip the Senate.”
Even Monday’s ruling might lead to more litigation on abortion rights in the U.S., as opposed to settling them, according to Center for Reproductive Rights lawyer Julie Rikelman to the Times.
“The opinion did muddy the waters a little bit,” she told the Times. “It will lead to more litigation, not less.”
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