The draft Supreme Court decision on Roe v. Wade dealt a body blow to our democracy. It was, simultaneously, not surprising and totally shocking.
We face the very real prospect of watching the reversal of 50 years of settled law. This isn’t the first assault on individual privacy rights and it won’t be the last.
The Supreme Court decided Roe v. Wade by a vote of 7-2 in 1973. Four Republican-appointed justices joined the majority. This decision was grounded in the right to privacy, first articulated by the court in 1965 in a decision titled Griswold v. Connecticut. The Griswold case struck down a Connecticut law that banned the sale of birth control to married couples. A grim reminder of state interference into our private lives.
If the Supreme Court does in fact overturn ‘Roe’, Congress could fix this by codifying Roe v. Wade into law. Chuck Schumer expects to force a vote in the Senate on this next week where it will doubtless be blocked by a filibuster.
As long as Republicans are in power, they will continue their assault on rights we’ve long taken for granted: legal birth control, marriage equality, voting rights, etc. with the intent of rolling back the clock to 1953.
As the ramifications of this bombshell sink in, look for the political landscape to shift. As I write this, reinforced security fencing now surrounds the Supreme Court - as though it were trying to protect itself from us when it is really we who are under attack by them.
“I do not think that 50% of America should be told that they have to put their bodies at risk of life or death without their consent… I hope every human being in this country understands that when you take away a woman’s right to make her decisions about her health and well-being, she is no longer a full citizen."
Kirsten Gillibrand Senator from New York
The US House January 6 Committee is scheduled to begin televised hearings on June 1st. Jamie Raskin, who serves on this committee, has been quoted as saying that these hearings will ‘blow the roof off the house’.
Be mindful and be watchful. Republicans never wanted the Supreme Court to be outed by Alito’s draft decision. AND, they never wanted any of the facts surrounding January 6th to be revealed, let alone televised.
When taken together, the leaked decision and the televised hearings could be seismic.
I have often observed that this year we need to match 2020’s record voter turnout - ‘vote like it’s 2020!’
By the time we go to the polls in November, Roe will have been decided and the full horror of January 6th will have been revealed on live television.
One final observation for the week... It seems that as soon as we think things couldn’t get worse, we’re proven wrong - again and again. In the face of this adversity, please know that all of us are stronger than we think and it's time to tap into that resolve and resilience. And, if you think you have none left, remember the people of Ukraine.
Until next week, stay strong and stay healthy.
Chair, LD3 Democrats