As the Supreme Court announces the overture of Roe v. Wade, questions about what that means for a woman’s right to abortion begin to arise. This decisions brings several issues to the forefront as far as whether or not it will be nationally outlawed and who is responsible for making these next calls.
Assistant Professor in the Departments of Population Health Sciences and Obstetrics & Gynecology at UW Madison, Tiffany Green, said it will most likely be up to each individual state to decide how that law will play out in their respective states. It may be possible for woman to be arrested for receiving an abortion, as there already have already been instances pre-overture.
Green also said she thinks that even medically necessary abortions could be at risk including medically induced miscarriages for potentially life-threatening or nonviable pregnancies.
Additionally, the people who will be most affected will be low-income, and more specifically women of color. “There are a lot of equity issues that arise from this.” Green said “That is, people who have resources are almost always going to be able to get an abortion.” This is because of the way our economy is racially stratified, according to Green. Racial disparities will show themselves in birth outcomes as well as maternal mortality rates.
Legal issues are also put in play as a result of this overture. Andrew More, from Thomas More Society said this is something that should be celebrated and that the Court is finally getting it right after 49 years of getting it wrong. However, the battle is not yet over and there is still room for abortion laws to change. “This doesn’t mean that abortion is prohibited in the United States,” More said “It just means that the issue of abortion is going to be turned over from the hands of the U.S. Supreme Court to the legislatures of the county.”
Rather than it just being up to state’s to decide, More says it will also be up to the U.S. legislature to decide and action could be seen at the Congress level. Additionally, Wisconsin is one of a number of states that has a prohibition on abortion that was passed prior to the decision of Roe v. Wade. What many people don’t know, according to More, is that the U.S. Supreme Court can’t repeal statutes. As Roe v. Wade is overturned, it is entirely possible for this abortion statute to be enforceable.
What is to come for the state of Wisconsin, let alone the U.S., in terms of abortion rights is still up in the air.