The document, which Politico says it received from a “person familiar with the court case,” is marked “first draft” and dated February 10, 2022 — two months after the hearing in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization case . ABC News has not independently confirmed the draft.
“Roe was terribly wrong from the start,” Judge Samuel Alito, the opinion’s apparent author, writes in an online copy of the draft.
The leak is an extraordinary violation of Supreme Court protocol and tradition. Never before has such a consistent draft report been made public before publication.
Reached by ABC News, a Supreme Court spokeswoman declined to comment.
The Dobbs case concerns Mississippi’s ban on abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy — long before fetus viability, the long-standing dividing line set by the court before which states cannot restrict a woman’s access to the procedure.
During the December arguments, five of the judges indicated that they were prepared to scrap the “viability standard” established by Roe and a subsequent 1992 decision, Planned Parenthood v. Casey.
An unnamed source familiar with the deliberations told Politico that Justices Alito, Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett all initially supported a government side for Mississippi and “that lineup remains unchanged as of this week.”
However, drafting Supreme Court opinions is a fluid and dynamic process, sources familiar with internal workings told ABC News. The released document suggests that a majority of judges are likely to side with Mississippi, but how far a verdict will ultimately go remains unclear.
Chief Justice John Roberts famously late changed his vote during deliberations on the Affordable Care Act in 2012, narrowly saving the bill from being struck down. A Wall Street Journal editorial this month suggested that Roberts, who reveres established precedent and the court’s reputation, may be trying to persuade one of his conservative colleagues to join him in a narrower opinion.
If Alito’s opinion were to stand as written, it would dramatically upend abortion laws across America, effectively allowing each state to set its own policies.
“The Constitution does not prohibit the citizens of any state from regulating or prohibiting abortion,” the draft concludes. “Roe and Casey have acquired that authority. We are now overriding those decisions and returning that authority to the people and their elected officials.”
This is an evolving story. Please check again for updates.
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https://abc13.com/supreme-court-roe-vs-wade-abortion-overturned/11812895/ The Supreme Court’s draft opinion shows the court appears willing to rule Roe v. Plunging Wade: REPORT