The Star (Jamaica)
Abortion ban hangs by a thread
Adraft opinion that suggests the US Supreme Court could be poised to overturn the landmark decision reverberated in political battleground Michigan, where a near-total abortion ban may take effect again after nearly 50 years and is unlikely to be changed by the Republican-led Legislature.
There is increased attention in Michigan on the state courts, where Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Planned Parenthood – anticipating the ruling – filed lawsuits less than a month ago seeking to invalidate the dormant 1931 law that remains on the books.
The governor wants the Michigan Supreme Court to declare a constitutional right to abortion by recognising the rights to privacy and bodily integrity. She argues the law is invalid under the due process and equal protection clauses of the state constitution.
The development also put a focus on the November election, when the governor and legislators are up for re-election and voters may decide whether to enshrine abortion rights in the state constitution.
“Women are waking up this morning feeling hopeless; but we can’t go back. I’m more motivated than ever to keep fighting like hell to ensure abortion remains safe and accessible in Michigan,” Whitmer tweeted.
The leaked draft opinion published Monday by Politico in effect states there is no constitutional right to abortion services and would allow individual states to more heavily regulate or outright ban the procedure. But it’s unclear if the draft represents the Supreme Court’s final word on the matter – opinions often change in ways big and small in the drafting process.