Supreme Court Justices Are Not Budging on Roe v. Wade

AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

When Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas declared that he and his fellow conservative justices would not be “bullied” into changing their stances on Roe v. Wade, he meant business. So far, it appears he is right, according to a recent report from the Washington Post.

At a conference in Atlanta on Frday, Thomas told the audience that the nation is “becoming addicted to wanting particular outcomes, not living with the outcomes we don’t like.” He continued: “We can’t be an institution that can be bullied into giving you just the outcomes you want. The events from earlier this week are a symptom of that.”

The justice’s defiant comments came as pro-abortion leftists have been engaged in a full-on attempt to intimidate the court into protecting Roe v. Wade. After a draft opinion leaked indicating that the 1973 decision on abortion might be overturned, protesters have shown up at the homes of the conservative-leaning justices to demonstrate. This occurred after activists leaked their home addresses to the public.

When the demonstrations were being planned, White House press secretary Jen Psaki appeared to defend them– as long as they were “peaceful.” However, at least one act of political violence against pro-lifers occurred in Wisconsin, when a pro-abortion advocate lobbed a Molotov cocktail into the building of a pro-life group. Unfortunately, the activist media was too busy demonizing pro-lifers to cover the story.

The Biden administration issued a tepid condemnation of the attack. In a statement, it said:

President Biden strongly condemns this attack and political violence of any stripe. The President has made clear throughout his time in public life that Americans have the fundamental right to express themselves under the Constitution, whatever their point of view. But that expression must be peaceful and free of violence, vandalism, or attempts to intimidate.

Nevertheless, despite the intimidation efforts, the justices have not been swayed on their opinions. In a report, the Washington Post explained that the leaked draft opinion, which was penned by Justice Samuel Alito and was written in February, is “almost surely obsolete now” because the rest of the court has had a chance to consider dissents and revisions. “But as of last week, the majority of five justices to strike Roe remains intact, according to three conservatives close to the court who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss a sensitive matter,” according to the report.

But it appears Chief Justice John Roberts, who is the only conservative judge who wishes to uphold Roe, is trying to persuade his colleagues to moderate their stances on the matter. From the Post:

A person close to the most conservative members of the court said Roberts told his fellow jurists in a private conference in early December that he planned to uphold the state law and write an opinion that left Roe and Casey in place for now. But the other conservatives were more interested in an opinion that overturned the precedents, the person said. A spokeswoman for the court declined to comment, and messages extended to justices were unreturned.

This appears to be a typical scenario among the conservative justices when it comes to making rulings.

“The right flank of the court is sometimes divided that way, with Thomas, Alito and Gorsuch pushing for aggressive changes in the law, and Roberts, Kavanaugh and Barrett more content to move more incrementally,” the report noted.

Being that the leaked draft was written in February, the Post is right to point out that there may be some changes that will take place before the ruling is issued. However, it does not seem likely that it will be significantly different from the original. The conservative justices, with the exception of Roberts, seem to be steadfast in their opposition to Roe v. Wade.

Moreover, the efforts to scare them into upholding the ruling appear to be failing miserably. Even the ones hoping to persuade at least one conservative justice into changing their minds probably know their efforts will not succeed. Of course, anything is possible; perhaps Roberts will win over some of his colleagues. But either way, one thing is clear: Abortion policy in the United States is about to undergo a drastic change.


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