The justices in the Dobbs majority promised to return abortion “to the people’s elected representatives.” For conservative activists, this was just the beginning.
BY PETER SHAMSHIRI
MAY 30, 2023
When the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the Court’s conservatives tried to couch the decision in moderated, legalistic terms.
In his majority opinion, Justice Samuel Alito wrote that the Court was simply returning the power to regulate abortion “to the people’s elected representatives.” Justice Brett Kavanaugh filed a platitude-ridden concurrence stating that “on the issue of abortion, the Constitution is neither pro-life nor pro-choice. The Constitution is neutral.” Both justices were making the same point. They were claiming that the decision did not speak to the propriety of abortion, but instead was a judgment only about the scope of the Constitution.