Almost all of the Republican members of Congress representing Michigan joined more than 200 members of Congress in asking the United States Supreme Court to reconsider its ruling that legalized abortion.
Thirty-nine senators and 168 members of the House signed a “friend of the court” brief submitted to the Supreme Court this week as it prepares to examine an anti-abortion group’s challenge to a law of Louisiana. The case does not directly challenge Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 decision that guaranteed a woman’s right to abortion, but will be the first abortion case to be heard in the High Court since Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch solidified a Tory majority on the bench . .
Michigan has an abortion law that would go into effect if Roe v. Wade was canceled. The law makes it a crime to administer an abortion unless it protects the life of the mother.
US Representatives Jack Bergman, R-Watersmeet; Bill Huizenga, R-Zealand; Paul Mitchell, R-Dryden; John Moolenar, R-Midland; and Tim Walberg, R-Tipton signed the letter submitted Jan. 2. The brief argues that Roe v. Wade is an impractical opinion.
Forty-six years after Roe’s ruling, this remains a radically unsolved precedent: two of the seven judges who initially joined the majority have subsequently repudiated him in whole or in part, and virtually all abortion decisions have since been closely divided, ”the memoir states.
“Roe’s case law has been haphazard from the start,” the brief says, and has been “undermined” by subsequent decisions.
Court rulings since Roe “clearly have not settled the abortion issue,” lawmakers wrote.
Lawmakers also asked the court to consider overturning another landmark abortion decision in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, who reaffirmed but upheld Pennsylvania’s laws requiring informed consent and a 24-hour waiting period before an abortion procedure.
United States Representative Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, was the only Michigan Republican not to sign the letter. A spokesperson for the longtime congressman said Upton generally does not attach his name to “friend of the court” memoirs, but did not respond if Upton supported the cancellation of Roe v. Wade.
Other signatories to the brief include top House Republicans, but not Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. Two moderate Democrats signed the brief, U.S. Representatives Collin Peterson, D-Minn., And Daniel Lipinski, D-Ill.
The brief was submitted by Americans United for Life, a national anti-abortion group. The organization found that Michigan had “a strong record in protecting women and unborn children from the harms inherent in abortion” in a report. Report 2020 on access to abortion across the country.
Right to Life of Michigan, another anti-abortion group leading an initiative to ban dilation and extraction procedures in the state, also filed a “friend of the court” brief with the Supreme Court. .
The brief argues that Roe v. Wade of the tribunal exceeded the limits of his power, violated the process of amending the U.S. Constitution, and undermined the legitimacy of the U.S. justice system. President Barbara Listing said the landmark 1973 decision is a “stain on democracy.”
Michigan’s Right to Life pointed to a failed 1972 voting initiative that would have allowed a state-licensed physician to terminate a pregnancy within the first 20 weeks. Listing said Michigan voters have chosen to uphold the state’s abortion ban, but the Supreme Court “has clearly overstepped its bounds by inventing a right to abortion during the nine months of pregnancy.” .
Nearly half a century later, most Michigan voters support the right to abortion. Opinion polls show a growing number of Americans thinks abortion should be legal in most cases.
A June 2019 poll of 600 likely voters by Glengariff Group found that 58% of Michiganders oppose a ban on expansion and evacuation procedures. In August, 54% of Michigan voters interviewed by EPIC-MRA described themselves as “pro-choice”.
Right to Life Michigan said the Louisiana law at the center of the Supreme Court case should stand, which Roe v. Wade either canceled or not.
Doctors who perform abortions are required by law to obtain admitting privileges to local hospitals. Right to Life Michigan maintains the law ensures the safety of women who experience complications from an abortion, while critics say the law was created to make it more difficult to access abortion.
Learn more about abortion in Michigan on MLive:
The Michigan Attorney General will not prosecute abortions if Roe v. Wade is canceled