On December 1, the Supreme Court in Mississippi’s bid in historic Roe v. Wade’s decision, which guaranteed a woman’s right to an abortion.
The court released its argument calendar for late November and early December on Monday.
Mississippi is asking the High Court to uphold its ban on most abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy. The state has told the court that it should overturn the decision of Roe and Planned Parenthood v. Casey of 1992, which prohibits states from banning abortions prior to viability, the point at which the fetus can survive outside the womb, during pregnancy. of about 24 weeks.
The court recently allowed a Texas law to take effect that bans abortions after cardiac activity is detected, approximately 6 weeks of pregnancy, before some women even know they are are pregnant. The law is unusual in that it allows private citizens to prosecute those who have facilitated prohibited abortion. The court, divided 5–4, did not rule on the constitutionality of the law, but instead refused to block enforcement when challenging the law in the courts.
Still, abortion providers took the vote as an ominous sign of where the court, its conservative majority fortified with former President Donald Trump’s three appointees, could move on to abortion.
Providers have said Mississippi wants the court to “set aside the half-century precedent and invite states to ban abortion altogether.”
One of hundreds of legal briefs on both sides of the case has been filed by more than 500 athletes in support of abortion rights on Monday, warning that taking away constitutional protections from abortion would be disastrous for female athletes. The group includes Olympic gold medalist in swimming Chrissy Perham, who said it was her first time speaking publicly about her miscarriage.
Peram, who competes under the name Ahman-Leighton, said her decision to have an abortion after becoming pregnant “ultimately inspired me to become an Olympian, a college graduate, and a proud mother today.” He won three medals, including two gold, at the 1992 Barcelona Games.
Other athletes who signed the high-court filing include soccer stars Megan Rapinoe and Becky Sauerbrunn; basketball players Diana Taurasi, Brittany Griner and Brenna Stewart; and water polo player Ashley Johnson.
The Mississippi law was enacted in 2018, but was blocked after a federal court challenge. The state’s only abortion clinic, the Jackson Women’s Health Organization, remains open and offers abortions up to 16 weeks of pregnancy. Providers said about 100 abortions are performed a year after the 15th week.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 90 percent of abortions in the US occur in the first 13 weeks of pregnancy.
The judges will be in their seats in the marble courtroom for the biggest test of abortion rights in decades.
The high court announced earlier this month that judges planned to return to their majestic, marble courtrooms for arguments beginning in October, more than a year and a half after in-person sessions were halted due to the coronavirus pandemic. time later.
The court is allowing live audio of the session, but members of the public will not be able to appear in person due to the coronavirus pandemic. Journalists covering the court regularly will be present.
All judges have been vaccinated, the court has said, allowed to return to individual arguments after more than a year of arguments via telephone. The court remains closed to the public.
Judges were hearing cases over the phone during the pandemic.