A group of at least 228 Republican lawmakers signed onto an amicus brief asking the Supreme Court to overturn Roe V. Wade in the strongest push yet for getting rid of women’s rights to terminate the life of an unborn baby in her womb.
The 44 senators and 184 House members said in the brief that the 1973 Roe decision and other related ones have “a vise grip on abortion politics.”
“Congress and the States have shown that they are ready and able to address the issue in ways that reflect Americans’ varying viewpoints and are grounded in the science of fetal development and maternal health,” the lawmakers, who represent 40 states, said.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) were among the signers of the amicus brief.
“What if Roe Fell?”
Sens. Josh Hawley (MO), Mike Lee (UT) and Ted Cruz (TX) filed a separate amicus brief in the case earlier in the week.
The briefs were in support of the Mississippi Attorney General, who asked the Supreme Court to overturn Roe V. Wade when the justices reviewed a case about whether to uphold Mississippi’s ban on almost all abortions over 15 weeks.
If Roe V. Wade is overturned, that doesn’t mean abortion can’t be legal, it means that states will decide the issue for themselves rather than being forced to allow the practice.
The Center for Reproductive Rights did an analysis, “What if Roe Fell?”, of the likely fallout from overturning the landmark law, and found that 21 states would probably keep abortion legal, while 24 states plus three territories would probably ban it.
South, Midwest could see abortion banned without Roe
Most of the American South and Midwest would probably see abortion outlawed, the group said.
Mississippi is appealing two lower court rulings that said the 15-week restriction wasn’t legal because of Roe precedents that outlaw restrictions before a fetus is viable, around 24 weeks.
If Roe is overturned, however, those precedents will not apply and Mississippi’s restriction can stand.
The Supreme Court currently has a 6-3 conservative majority, which is seen as the best chance in decades to push for Roe to be overturned.