The U.S. Supreme Court will address a major abortion case involving Roe vs. Wade, an action that seeks to rekindle long-term tensions over abortion rights in the United States.
The court said Monday it would review whether abortion bans in early pregnancy are unconstitutional, in a case involving a Mississippi state law banning abortions after 15 weeks. The Roe v. Wade decision, first handed down in 1973, enshrined the constitutional right to abortion.
The Supreme Court is likely to hear the case this fall, with a ruling handed down in the spring or summer of 2022, just before the midterm elections next November.
It will be the first major abortion case to be considered by the U.S. Supreme Court since Conservative Amy Coney Barrett joined the bench last year, following the death of Liberal Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
With Barrett’s confirmation, the nine-member Supreme Court is balanced, 6-3, in favor of judges appointed by Republican presidents.
Barrett’s nomination for Donald Trump last year and Senate confirmation just days before the November presidential election were hailed by religious conservatives and progressives opposed him. Barrett is a practicing Catholic and mother of seven, who has long been celebrated by self-described “pro-life” or anti-abortion advocates.
Last summer, when Ginsburg was still on the bench, the Supreme Court passed a restrictive law on abortion in Louisiana, after Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the liberal wing of the court.
Abortion has long been an issue of light bars in U.S. politics, although public opinion has remained remarkably consistent in the decades since the Roe decision.
According to Gallup, 50% of Americans believe that abortion should be legal “only in certain circumstances,” compared to 29% who think the procedure should be legal “under no circumstances” and 20% he believes it should be illegal in “all cases.” circumstances ”.
But Republican and Democrat lawmakers have tightened their stances on the issue in recent years, with many conservatives pushing to overturn the Roe decision and many progressives advocating fewer restrictions on abortion.
Joe Biden, the president of the United States, who is also a practicing Catholic, left in 2019 his long-standing support for the Hyde amendment, which bans the use of federal funding for abortion services. The White House did not immediately comment on the Supreme Court’s measure on Monday.
A major decision on abortion next year could color the period set for mid-2022, when Republicans will try to regain control of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. Abortion rights have long been a mobilizing issue for conservative voters, but they have also energized progressives in recent years.