The US Supreme Court Overturned Roe v. Wade & Abortion Is No Longer A Right

It all depends on where you live now.

Senior Editor
Abortion-rights protesters in Washington, D.C.

Abortion-rights protesters in Washington, D.C.

It's official: Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court decision that guaranteed the right to get an abortion in the United States, is no more.

The U.S. Supreme Court struck down its own decades-old decision on Friday, paving the way for each state to restrict or outright ban abortion as it sees fit.

Roughly half of the U.S. states already have plans to do just that.

"The Supreme Court has taken away our right to abortion and overturned Roe v. Wade, opening the floodgates for states across the country to ban abortion," Planned Parenthood said in a statement after the decision was handed down Friday.

"The court has failed us all — but this is far from over."

Most of the court's Republican-appointed justices — including three appointed by Donald Trump — voted for the move, while the three Democrat-appointed justices opposed it. Chief Justice John Roberts had a more narrow view of the case that would not have struck down Roe v. Wade.

"We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled," wrote Justice Samuel Alito in the decision. Casey was a later decision that modified but upheld Roe.

"The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision," Alito wrote.

The three liberal justices ripped the move in their dissent opinion.

"With sorrow—for this Court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection—we dissent," they wrote.

Conservative activists have been pushing to overturn Roe v. Wade since the day it passed in 1973, and many Republican states had anti-abortion laws ready and waiting to roll out the moment it fell.

Abortion laws will now depend on which state you're in, and some states are expected to make it a crime.

The move is one of the biggest reversals in U.S. Supreme Court history, although it's not much of a surprise at this point.

Someone leaked a draft version of the decision in May, essentially spoiling the court's big reveal but not changing it in any significant way.

Polls show that the move goes against the opinion of most Americans, the Associated Press reports.

The decision is also expected to have a more severe impact on minority and low-income people who might have a harder time crossing state lines or taking time off work to get an abortion where it's legal.

"Today's decision is a gender, racial and economic justice catastrophe with deadly consequences," the ACLU tweeted.

"Women and people who can become pregnant have been forced into a second-class status. The impacts will fall hardest on Black women who already face a severe maternal mortality crisis.

"Because of today's decision, our right to control our own bodies and futures will depend on where we live and who we are."

The decision is final, and it would take another Supreme Court move to reverse it.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

Josh Elliott
Senior Editor
Josh Elliott is a Senior Editor for Narcity Media focused on celebrity interviews and is based in Toronto, Ontario.