Advocates and some GOP lawmakers have started mobilizing around potential federal legislation to outlaw abortion after six weeks of pregnancy
By Caroline Kitchener
May 2, 2022
Leading antiabortion groups and their allies in Congress have been meeting behind the scenes to plan a national strategy that would kick in if the Supreme Court rolls back abortion rights this summer, including a push for a strict nationwide ban on the procedure if Republicans retake power in Washington.
The effort, activists say, is designed to bring a fight that has been playing out largely in the courts and state legislatures to the national political stage — rallying conservatives around the issue in the midterms and pressuring potential 2024 GOP presidential candidates to take a stand.
After building toward such a moment for half a century, pro-life legal efforts aren’t likely to stop there.
By Jeannie Suk Gersen, The New Yorker
April 17, 2022
In 2003, when the Supreme Court held, in Lawrence v. Texas, that criminalizing gay sex was unconstitutional, it insisted that the decision had nothing to do with marriage equality. In a scathing dissent, Justice Antonin Scalia wrote, “Do not believe it.” Then, in 2013, when the Court struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act’s definition of marriage as being between a man and a woman, emphasizing the tradition of letting the states define marriage, Scalia issued another warning, saying that “no one should be fooled” into thinking that the Court would leave states free to exclude gay couples from that definition. He was finally proved right two years later, when the reasoning on dignity and equality developed in those earlier rulings led to the Court’s holding that the Constitution requires all states to recognize same-sex marriage.
BY ABIGAIL ABRAMS
JANUARY 28, 2022
As the Supreme Court weighs the high-profile case that could unwind Roe v. Wade—and, with it, the Constitutional right to abortion—conservative state lawmakers are introducing a wave of new bills aimed at limiting abortion at the state level. While several states have introduced bills mimicking Texas’ controversial six-week abortion ban, at least three more—Florida, Arizona and West Virginia—are considering laws that would ban abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy, modeled on the Mississippi law at the center of the Supreme Court case.
These bills directly violate the so-called viability standard set by Roe v. Wade, which states that women have the constitutional right to end pregnancies until the fetus is viable. But proponents are betting that the Supreme Court’s decision, which is expected before the end of June, will allow Mississippi’s 15-week ban to stand. They are arguing that the 15-week ban is a more reasonable alternative to the extreme, Texas-style laws that curtail access to abortion after about just six weeks.