Pro-Abortion Left Sets Sights on Codifying Roe

June 8, 2021

Democrats seem to have found a use for Congress again. After years of relying on the courts to do their dirty work, the far-Left has had to find other solutions after Donald Trump spent the last four years balancing U.S. benches. Now, suddenly, more liberals have seemed to awaken to the fact that there's a legislative branch too, and they're spilling all of their ink urging fellow abortion activists to use it. "The Supreme Court may toss Roe," the Washington Post tries to comfort its Leftist readers. "But Congress can still preserve abortion..."

It's an ironic twist from the last several decades when the Democratic Party turned to activist judges to change the governing policies of the nation they couldn't rewrite democratically. Now, of course, they face an even steeper climb in 2021 -- as the nation continues to become more and more pro-life. Relying on Congress to protect late-term abortion will be a tall order when members are forced to reckon with a country where only 29 percent of people think women should be allowed to abort from the second trimester on.

Still, Democrats are desperately trying to be optimistic -- banking on their slim majority in the House and their vice presidential tie-breaker in the Senate. Now that the shoe is on the other foot, the Post sounded almost populist when it came to encouraging abortion supporters. "Citizens can easily feel disempowered when issues they care about are reduced to analyzing the proclivities of nine people in Washington sitting in black robes. Since 1973, the questions about reproductive rights have been dominated by the court, not Congress. But now we have an opportunity to recalibrate the balance and guarantee reproductive justice for Americans in every state. We don't need the court to protect these rights. We just need a majority vote in Congress."

Easier said than done, SBA List will tell them. The biggest case on the Supreme Court docket, the fall term's arguments over Mississippi's 15-week abortion limit, is a lot more popular than Democrats give it credit for. According to the organization's brand new polling, 53 percent of voters are "more likely to vote for a Republican candidate who supports a 15-week limit on abortion" versus just 28 percent of voters who prefer a Democratic candidate who supports unlimited abortion up until the moment of birth. Independent voters break even stronger to the GOP side, with a 54-18 percent margin.

Making matters worse for the Left, voters -- 55 percent -- are even more likely to support a law like Mississippi's when they learn that an unborn child at that stage has the capacity to feel pain. Another red flag for Biden's Democrats, the enthusiasm is on the pro-life side. Forty-three percent of pro-life voters said the issue of abortion was "very important" (10 on a one-to-10 scale) in casting their ballot for elected officials, while only 29 percent of "pro-choice" voters said the same.

So when Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) introduced their misnamed "Women's Health Protection Act" today to make abortion-on-demand until the moment of birth permanent, they aren't only pursuing wildly unpopular legislation, they're exposing the fact that abortion was never law to begin with. This was a Supreme Court invention that has claimed the lives of more than 60 million innocent children. And what Mississippi has said -- and we hope the justices uphold -- is that abortion should be an issue the people and their state leaders decide. Not the courts.

When the justices hear the Mississippi case, the Washington Post tried to clarify to readers, "it is not being asked to outlaw the practice of abortion. The court has only one power -- the power of judicial review -- which means all it can do is say whether a particular abortion restriction passed by a legislature is constitutional. The court cannot outlaw abortion itself. So if the court sides with Mississippi and says, 'you can have this law,' that simply means those states whose legislatures want such laws restricting abortion can have them. Other states that don't want to restrict abortion do not have to."

On CNN, Governor Tate Reeves (R-Miss.) agreed. "The question is not, are you going to overturn Roe v. Wade? The question is: the science has changed, and therefore it makes sense for the court to review their decisions from the past. And this is a vehicle in which for them to do it." Let me just tell you, he added, "for people such as myself that are pro-life, I believe that the Supreme Court made a mistake in the 1970s. But that's not the issue at stake that is before the court, hopefully, when the arguments are heard sometime in the fall."

For a more in-depth look at the 1973 ruling -- and what it does and doesn't do -- check out FRC's new publication, Roe v. Wade: An Explainer (2021). For a legal primer, read Katherine Beck Johnson's paper, Roe Must End: The Legal, Historical, and Cultural Reasons to Overturn Roe v. Wade (2021).