USA – What Does the Future of Abortion Rights Look Like?

What Does the Future of Abortion Rights Look Like?

With Anthony Kennedy’s retirement, there’s a great deal of uncertainty about how a reconfigured Supreme Court will react to future cases.
Mary Ziegler
July 2, 2018

In the summer of 1988, abortion-rights attorneys debated whether to appeal a major abortion case involving minors, Hodgson v. Minnesota, to the Supreme Court. Anti-abortion lawyers working with Americans United for Life knew exactly why the opposition hesitated: Anthony Kennedy, a 52-year-old Catholic appointed by Ronald Reagan, had recently taken his place on the Supreme Court.

But instead of steadfastly opposing abortion, Kennedy quickly established his role as the Court’s swing vote on reproductive rights. With him gone, the future of legal abortion—and the activist movements surrounding it—is more uncertain than it has been in recent memory.