Different Takes: Alabama’s Abortion Ban Has Supreme Court Written All Over It; Overturning Precedents, Even If It’s Roe, Needs To Be Done Only On Legal Merits, Not Politics
Opinion writers weigh in on the anti-abortion laws being passed in several states.
The Washington Post:
Alabama’s Abortion Bill Is Not About Alabama. It’s About Tossing Roe V. Wade.
Yes, the bill that Alabama’s Senate votes on today is intended to put an end to virtually all abortions in the state. Taking a different tack from other “heartbeat” bills we have seen recently, this one makes it a felony for a doctor to perform or attempt an abortion, and anyone who violates the law faces a sentence of up to 99 years in Alabama’s prisons. The sole exception is when the mother’s life is threatened. Most laws that prohibit some aspect of abortion have an exception that permits the procedure in cases of rape or incest. Alabama’s bill does not. But that draconian nature of the bill is its point — because its sponsors aren’t just looking to prohibit abortion in Alabama. They are looking for a clean vehicle to take to the Supreme Court. They want to overturn Roe v. Wade, supplanting it with something that makes state laws prohibiting abortion the law of the land. (Joyce White Vance, 5/14)
The Wall Street Journal:
Liberals Who Cry Roe
Who would have thought that a Supreme Court ruling in an interstate tax dispute would devolve into a brawl over abortion politics? Such are our political times as the four liberal Justices on Monday chided their conservative colleagues for overturning a 40-year precedent, which progressives warn will create a stare decisis slippery slope to banning abortion. At issue in Franchise Tax Board v. Hyatt was whether states enjoy sovereign immunity in other states’ courts. California urged the Court to overturn its Nevada v. Hall (1979) precedent, which held that states aren’t required to grant legal immunity to other states. Most do for comity purposes, and state courts have entertained only 14 cases by private citizens against other states in the past four decades. (5/14)
Heartbeat Bills: Abortion Laws Show Pro-Life Loyalties Not For Women
What I do know for sure is that I care about all lives, and that includes the lives of women contemplating abortion. The anti-abortion movement pays lip service to caring for women, but what the recent spate of laws shows us is that in the end there is only one thing they care about: the embryo or fetus. The lives of young rape or incest victims are accepted as collateral damage, and women who want to protect their health are as cast sinister actors incapable of searching their own consciences for a way forward when a wanted pregnancy goes awry. (Kirsten Powers, 5/14)
Abortion Bans Like In Georgia And Alabama Are Start Of Slow War
The Georgia anti-abortion law signed last week and the near-total abortion ban Alabama will consider again Tuesday are just the most recent examples of what you could call “Kavanaugh laws.”Like anti-abortion statutes recently enacted by Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Dakota and Ohio, these are blatantly unconstitutional laws openly intended to violate the U.S. Supreme Court’s abortion-rights jurisprudence that goes back to Roe v. Wade. (Noah Feldman, 5/14)