Is Roe on the way out?
Roe v. Wade is 'œcrumbling,' said National Review in an editorial. Thirty-three years ago this month, the Supreme Court issued its landmark decision to legalize abortion, igniting a bitter controversy that still divides the country. Liberals insist that Roe is 'œwell-settled as a matter of law,' but it's hardly that. In recent years, the Supreme Court has been steadily 'œchipping away at Roe' and its constitutionally shaky claim that women have 'œa right' to an abortion. In 1989, the justices gave states more latitude in restricting abortions; in 1992's Planned Parenthood v. Casey, they scrapped Roe's strict trimester formula. Today, a majority of Americans are tilting pro-life, supporting parental and spousal notifications about abortions, mandatory waiting periods, and a ban on all late-term abortions. 'œThe pro-abortion activists are right to be alarmed.'
We certainly are, said William Baude in The New York Times. Even many pro-choice Democrats and liberal pundits are now resigning themselves to Roe's demise at the hands of a Supreme Court stocked with Bush appointees. The new, default position of the left is that a nation without Roe won't be so bad: 'œBlue' states will continue to provide legal abortions, so 'œred' state women will simply have to get on a bus or plane to have the procedure done safely. But the reality could be far more draconian. 'œIf states can declare that life begins at conception,' they can also make it a crime to cross state lines to get an abortion. Some rabid red states might even detain 'œat risk' women until they give birth. If Roe falls, the result just may well be 'œchaos.'