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Supreme Court Upholding Texas Law Would Save Babies—and Maybe America

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abortion

What does it take to raise the blood pressure of an entire country? Just three letters: Roe.  

Thanks to Texas, those three letters are back in the headlines. The state’s new abortion law goes to greater lengths than perhaps any other state legislation to protect the lives of the unborn. Everyone agrees that the Texas law will be challenged in federal court.  Ultimately, the Supreme Court will determine if the federal constitutional right to an abortion conjured by Roe v. Wade is still the law of the land, or whether Roe should be changed for one or more reasons. Predictably, voices on the right have praised the move of the Texas government, while the left has reacted with outrage.

Yet even pro-life pundits may be missing the real story. Yes, allowing states to adopt more pro-life laws would save babies. But it might just save America too.

Of course, it’s hard to imagine anything involving abortion uniting America. Just look at the left’s distortions and deceit about the Supreme Court’s recent—and very limited—ruling that, until someone actually tries to enforce the law, lower courts can’t stop Texas’s ban on abortions after a heartbeat is detected.

But even as the way has been cleared for the Texas pro-life law to take effect, the Supreme Court is set to hear an even bigger case in the coming term, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. In that case, the Court cannot avoid the question about the constitutional validity of Roe.

Ironically, as even progressives like Ruth Bader Ginsburg have hinted, it took a view of the U.S. Constitution as a “living document” to establish the right to kill a living human being before birth. 

Now, thanks to President Trump’s appointment of three originalist judges in a single term, there is the real possibility that the Supreme Court will revisit Roe or modify the legal standard which currently prohibits any “undue burdens” on a person’s right to an abortion.

For example, the Court might conclude that a 15-week abortion ban—like Mississippi’s ban in Dobbs—is not an undue burden because it gives enough time for a woman to discover she is pregnant and make a decision.  

But this more incremental approach misses what might be the primary benefit of the Supreme Court going all the way and declaring that Roe was wrongly decided.

The hard truth is that such a step would not actually save all—or even most—lives lost to abortions.

Of course, every life counts. But some have credibly estimated that the number of legal abortions would only decline by about 14 percent in a post-Roe world.

Why?

Put simply, it would not outlaw abortion. It would return the decision to states. All in all, what states would do with that freedom doesn’t exactly look like a pro-life utopia.

Smaller red states, from South Carolina to Utah, would probably enact strong pro-life laws outlawing most abortions. But those states already have fairly low abortion rates.

In the meantime, heavily-populated blue states like New York and California with high abortion rates today would continue to permit abortions on demand, and might even make their abortion laws more permissive than allowed under current federal law.

And big but more purple states like Florida, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin would likely take a moderate approach. For example, they might prohibit abortions but with some combination of only a prohibition on abortions in later stages of pregnancy and exceptions like rape, incest, risk to the mother’s life, birth defects, or even when the mother is a minor.

But, unlike its practical implications, moving beyond Roe would be a colossal turning point in our culture and politics. And that’s the opportunity missing from the current debate.

For one thing, it would restore the Supreme Court to its rightful place in the Constitutional order—from a super-legislature to a court entrusted to enforce the Constitution.

It would also move Supreme Court nominations away from the knock-down-drag-out wars they’ve become, as exemplified by the circus around Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination.

Returning control to states and localities would revitalize federalism and state power when we need it most as an ascendant left-wing movement gains more and more power in Washington. It would also enable state legislatures to limit the destructive and centralizing power of the progressive “squad”.

After decades of left-wing efforts to the contrary, a majority of Americans still do not agree with Roe’s extremism. Changing Roe would restore the general public’s sense that elites and elite institutions are capable of listening to them.

Less important from the standpoint of protecting life, but no less satisfying from a political standpoint, decentralizing the fight also might—might—bring the most rabid, clickbait-obsessed internet trolls and celebrities on the left back to reality as they realize that the absence of Roe doesn’t lead to “cultism, fascism, terrorism”, nor does it mean that “democracy will wither & die [&] dictators will thrive,” as many have suggested.

A stronger constitutional order. A less toxic political debate. And a left that learns the world doesn’t end when they don’t get to rewrite the Constitution as they see fit. Those are the most likely outcomes if the Supreme Court revisits and ultimately reverses its 1973 decision to “create” a constitutional right to abortion.

The question isn’t whether America can survive if Roe is revisited. It’s how we survived this long without doing so.

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Skeptic
27 days ago

Welfare should be eliminated before abortion is banned. Otherwise, there will be more single mothers and their bastard offspring on the dole than ever before. Unintended consequences will be costly.

Rik
27 days ago

We’re NOT GOING TO SAVE AMERICA with Just Words WITHOUT ACTIONS! . . . The Time is Fast Approaching When We Will ALL Have to Stand Up and Be Counted or Shut Up and Serve!

Sara J Grosso
21 days ago
Reply to  Rik

I agree wholeheartedly.

J. Farley
27 days ago

Just watch how sold out Chief Justice John Roberts votes, he will vote to let the murdering to continue, its sad that he is seldom on the right side ( pun intended )

Max
27 days ago
Reply to  J. Farley

Unfortunately, you are correct. I sometimes wonder what the Left have on him to make him vote the way he does on important issues.

Sara J Grosso
21 days ago
Reply to  J. Farley

I think that is what me so angry. No one, with the exception of a hand full of Republicans have backed our President Trump. (Mitch McConnel might as well be a democrat) Where was the uproar over the fixed election??
Over here in Illinois, our democratic governor, pritzker, passed into Illinois law that we can now kill unborn babies right up to birth! And our congressman, Republican Adam Kinzinger was so silent that you could hear the crickets. (He is also a hypocritical, lying Rino. Not just throwing words out there- our family knew him personally.) . Any more I am so disgusted with politicians that I am afraid of WHO to vote for. (The ONLY one that ACTUALLY MEANT WHAT HE SAID WAS PRESIDENT TRUMP. Our family wants him back) I agree M. Farley. John Roberts is a two-faced hypocrite also and needs to be punched in the face. (And I’m not a violent person, but I have become so full of anger since Nov. 2020)

Robin Walter Boyd
27 days ago

If we would simply make those who want to abort their child, man and woman alike, completely responsible for all expenses required for abortion, which in most cases is an elective surgery, we wouldn’t have to decide on the legalities of abortion because women especially would become a lot more responsible about not getting pregnant when they don’t want a child.
NO tax dollars, directly or indirectly, should ever go toward abortion unless there is criminal issue involved. In the case of rape, as long as there is a criminal case for the rape, that would be one sort of criminal issue that would require an exemption for a woman wanting an abortion. In the case of the woman’s life being in physical danger to carry full term, that would be a medical exception because it would not be elective surgery. Otherwise, abortion should be a rider on insurance policies for women who don’t believe they can be responsible about not getting pregnant. Every insurance policy holder should not be forced to pay for an elective surgery for others. In the same way, all tax payers should not be forced to pay for elective surgeries due to irresponsible persons.

Chigger
27 days ago

Abortion attenuates a culture’s regard for human life, whether it’s for the unborn , the handicapped, or the elderly. It defiles American values, especially family!

Ronald Martin
27 days ago

Just think of how many great Americans may have been killed because that’s what it is, due to people using abortion as a a means of birth control

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