The US supreme court is reportedly set to vote to overturn the law that legalised abortion.
According to a report by Politico, this was disclosed in a leaked draft majority opinion written by Samuel Alito, a supreme court justice.
After an initial vote among the justices subsequent to an oral argument, one is assigned the majority opinion and writes a draft on it. This is then circulated among the justices.
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A ruling is, however, only final when it is published by the court, as the vote alignment can sometimes change in between the initial vote and the ruling being released.
The opinion written by Alito strikes down Roe v Wade, the court’s 1973 ruling that enshrined the constitutional right to abortion.
It also seeks to overturn a subsequent decision in 1992 that largely upheld that right.
It states that the Roe v. Wade decision that allowed abortions performed between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy, before a fetus would be viable outside the womb, was wrongly decided because the US constitution makes no specific mention of abortion rights.
“Abortion presents a profound moral question. The Constitution does not prohibit the citizens of each state from regulating or prohibiting abortion,” the draft reads.
“Roe was egregiously wrong from the start. Its reasoning was exceptionally weak, and the decision has had damaging consequences. And far from bringing about a national settlement of the abortion issue, Roe and Casey have enflamed debate and deepened division. It is time to heed the constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.
“We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled.”
The document has since garnered outrage from pro-abortion groups and individuals.
Reacting Hillary Clinton, former US secretary of state, said the decision is a direct assault on the dignity, rights, and lives of women.
“It will kill and subjugate women even as a vast majority of Americans think abortion should be legal. What an utter disgrace,” she reportedly said.
“An extremist supreme court is poised to overturn #RoeVWade and impose its far-right, unpopular views on the entire country. It’s time for the millions who support the constitution and abortion rights to stand up and make their voices heard. We’re not going back — not ever.”