life after roe

Another Leak Indicates Supreme Court Set to Overturn Roe v. Wade

Police stand behind the new security fence at the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Less than a week after a draft majority opinion was leaked indicating that the U.S. Supreme Court will soon overturn Roe v. Wade and end the constitutional right to an abortion, the pending decision appears to have been confirmed by yet another leak. The Washington Post reported Sunday that “as of last week, the five-member majority to strike Roe remains intact, according to three conservatives close to the court.”

The Post’s story is focused on the waning influence of Chief Justice John Roberts, who reportedly favors effectively gutting Roe instead of overturning it outright, and is apparently still attempting to sway one of the five justices in the majority to his side. Roberts’s position was also leaked to CNN, just hours after Justice Samuel Alito’s draft majority opinion came out. Roberts later said in a statement that the draft opinion “does not represent a decision by the Court or the final position of any member on the issues in the case” — but that doesn’t mean the same decision hasn’t been made.

The new leak is also notable because it clearly and openly came from conservatives, following days of performative outrage on the right claiming the draft opinion had been leaked by a liberal, and that the leak itself was the most important story — rather than the consequences of the monumental ruling.

Furthermore, while Roberts’s stance (upholding Mississippi’s abortion ban at 15 weeks) may seem more moderate than that of his conservative colleagues, as Intelligencer’s Irin Carmon has repeatedly emphasized, allowing the 15-week ban would effectively overturn Roe anyway. In other words, even if Roberts is able to win a convert to his side, the end result would be the same.

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Another Leak Indicates Supreme Court Set to Overturn Roe