Late on May 2, a leaked draft from the Supreme Court published by Politco revealed the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) is likely to overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case legalizing abortion nationwide.
The draft is not a final decision, and justices have changed their stances between the drafting stages and final decisions, according to the BBC.
“Though the decision is not yet final and abortion remains legal, if this decision issues, 26 states are poised to move quickly to ban abortion, leaving more than 36 million women of reproductive age — and other people who can become pregnant — without abortion access,” said Planned Parenthood in a press release.
Illinois Right to Life said in a press release that it condemns the leak, and intends on advocating for “the most vulnerable in our state.”
“Roe v. Wade created an erroneous ‘right’ to abortion that has no standing in the United States Constitution. We believe that the leak of the draft ruling on Monday, May 2 was an egregious act that threatens the function of the High Court,” said Illinois Right to Life.
“The ensuing reaction from abortion advocates illustrates that most of them believe protecting contrived ‘abortion rights’ justifies any means, no matter how destructive.”
Even though the decision on whether to overturn Roe v. Wade has not been officially made yet, some have cited that this breach points to a high likelihood that Roe v. Wade will go.
“I think it is very unlikely the Court’s determination will change before the issuance of the final opinion and judgment in the case,” said EU adjunct Steven Kowal. “The tenor of the opinion might change somewhat, but the result is almost certainly to be the same. The Court met to discuss the case and vote on an outcome. The draft reflects the voting that occurred.”
EU fourth year student Stephanie Cipolla spoke to The Leader on the possible overturning of Roe v. Wade.
“For the moms who don’t feel like they could sustain themselves and a child, for the ones who could die during pregnancy, for the ones who don’t want to bring a kid into this crazy mess of a world, for the woman who came home to a positive pregnancy test after a night of partying, and for the ones who simply just don’t want a child — this decision from the Supreme Court should not be overturned,” said Cipolla in an email to The Leader.
“I have faith that [J.B.] Pritzker will stand strong in his support of women’s rights. He has been active on social media spreading his opinion that he ‘trusts women,’ and supports women by supporting Ro[e] v Wade 410 U.S. 113,” continued Cipolla.
Should Roe v. Wade be overturned, abortion in Illinois will remain legal. Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said in a tweet on May 2, “We cannot let their [women’s] most profound and personal rights be violated.”
This leak comes after abortion restrictions are being put in place across the country, most notably in Texas, where a woman who gets an abortion in Texas after six weeks, as well as anyone who aids a woman in getting an abortion after six weeks, can face legal trials.
Dobbs v. Jackson, the current case SCOTUS is taking up, is set to be officially decided later in the summer.
Kowal spoke more with The Leader about the implications of this breach, and what the contents of the breach point to.
“The leak of a draft Supreme Court opinion is virtually unprecedented. In my study, practice and teaching of law, which now spans more than 50 years, this has never occurred,” said Kowal. “The members of the Court are all sworn to secrecy about the deliberations relating to the resolution of cases and the decisions that are to be rendered.”
Kowal continued, “Advance knowledge of decisions would provide significant advantages to those who gain that information. For example, individuals could engage in stock transactions that would anticipate the market response to the Court’s decisions.”
“The breach of confidentiality that has occurred will contribute to the declining popular perception of the legitimacy of the Court,” said Kowal.