The Mississippi legislature enacted the law at issue in the new case in 2018. If “the probable gestational age of the unborn human” was determined to be more than 15 weeks, it prohibited abortions. Medical emergencies and “a severe foetal abnormality” were specifically excluded from the law.
Mississippi’s law was ruled unconstitutional by lower courts, who characterised it as a calculated and cynical attack on abortion rights in direct conflict with Supreme Court precedent. In May, just months after Justice Amy Coney Barrett, who has said she personally opposes abortion, joined the court, the justices agreed to hear the case. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a proponent of abortion rights, died last year, and she took her place.
However, in a footnote, state officials told the justices in their petition for Supreme Court review that “the questions presented in this petition do not require the court to overturn Roe or Casey. A sustained assault on those precedents was launched as soon as the court agreed to hear the case.
Roe was “Egregiously Wrong,” According to a Brief Filed in July by Ms. Fitch
She wrote, “The Constitution does not protect a right to abortion. “Abortion is not specifically mentioned in the text of the Constitution. Nothing in the Constitution’s structure implies a right to abortion or prohibits states from enforcing their own abortion policies.”
Abortion rights should be determined through political process, according to Ms. Fitch. It is only when the Supreme Court returns abortion policy to the states that the “national fever on abortion can break,” she wrote. “Where agreement is more common, compromise is often possible, and disagreement can be resolved at the ballot box.”
Abortion providers in Mississippi argued in a brief filed on Monday that the state’s shift in approach amounted to a bait-and-switch strategy that could lead to the case being dismissed.
This case was about “whether all previability prohibitions on elective abortion are unconstitutional,” and the justices agreed to decide this. The long-standing constitutional framework for abortion rights could be reaffirmed, revised, or eliminated, depending on the court’s answer to that question.