First things first: Abortion is still legal. It remains your constitutional right.
But a U.S. Supreme Court document obtained by Politico makes it clear that our deepest fears for the future of national abortion access are coming true. The leaked draft majority opinion of the court in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization — a case in which a Mississippi health center is fighting a state abortion ban at 15 weeks of pregnancy — makes clear that the Supreme Court plans to eliminate the constitutional right to abortion established nearly a half-century ago with Roe v. Wade.
“Roe was egregiously wrong from the start,” Justice Samuel Alito asserts in the draft, the authenticity of which Chief Justice John Roberts confirmed in a May 3 statement. “We hold that Roe and [Planned Parenthood v. Casey, a 1992 case that upheld Roe] must be overruled.”
What This Means
The decision is not yet final, and abortion remains legal. If the justices of the Supreme Court hold to their indicated course, however, Roe will be overturned and 26 states will likely move quickly to ban abortion — leaving more than 36 million women of reproductive age and other people who can become pregnant without abortion access.
This leaked opinion is horrifying and unprecedented, and it confirms our worst fears: that the Supreme Court is prepared to end the constitutional right to abortion by overturning Roe v. Wade. While we have seen the writing on the wall for decades, it is no less devastating, and comes just as anti-abortion rights groups unveil their ultimate plan to ban abortion nationwide.—Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America
There’s more: it was reported this week that anti-abortion activists and politicians are seeking a nationwide abortion ban that would block abortion access in every state in the country.
The court, which is now dominated by justices hostile to reproductive freedoms, has failed this country. We’re devastated, we’re furious — and we’re fighting back.
Who This Hurts the Most
The threat to abortion access across the country is not hypothetical. People across the United States are already seeing their right to abortion crushed. The Supreme Court allowed a six-week abortion ban in Texas to stand since September 1, 2022 — in flagrant violation of the rights established by Roe. We’ve seen the dangers of these bans in real time; as a consequence of the Texas law, people have fled the state for care, sought abortion outside of the health care system — or, if they lack the financial resources and support to travel out of state, have been forced to carry pregnancies.
Barriers to accessing abortion and other health care services are nothing new, and include finding child care, taking time off of work, and navigating the costs of transportation and lodging associated with traveling hundreds, or even thousands, of miles for care. If the Supreme Court overturns Roe, as it appears to intend, it would cause the number of people who deal with such obstacles to skyrocket.
This decision will most harm Black, Latino, Indigenous, and other people of color who disproportionately feel the effects of abortion bans and restrictions due to this country's legacy of racism and discrimination.
Why We’re Fighting
The Supreme Court is poised to act in defiance of the American people. Research shows abortion bans and restrictions are deeply unpopular.
A recent Washington Post-ABC poll found that 75% of people say decisions on abortion should be left to the woman and her doctor, including 95% of Democrats, 81% of independents and 53% of Republicans.
A Gallup poll finds that 80% of the American public think abortion should be legal.
No judge, no politician, no ban should ever block you from being able to make your own personal medical decisions or set the course for your life. Abortion access should not be based on your ZIP code, income level, or immigration status.
Understand that Planned Parenthood and our partners have been preparing for every possible outcome in this case and are built for the fight. Planned Parenthood health centers remain open, abortion is currently still legal, and we will continue to fight like hell to protect the right to access safe, legal abortion.—Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America
We are in a fight to make sure everyone has the power to control their own bodies, lives, and futures. Elected officials and judges at all levels of government need to represent the people of this country who overwhelming believe in the right to abortion. We’ll keep fighting in every single state. This will not stop us.