Interested in getting next week’s story and other AllSides newsletters in your inbox? Click here to subscribe to the AllSides Story of the Week Newsletter.
The leak of an initial draft majority opinion suggesting that the Supreme Court may vote to strike down Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey has overtaken the national political discourse this week.
Protesters have gathered at the homes of Supreme Court justices, federal courthouses, and the offices of pro-life groups across the country. In Wisconsin, a Molotov cocktail was thrown at the office of one such group — an attack condemned by prominent Democrats and Republicans alike.
Senate Democrats took up a test vote Wednesday to codify Roe v. Wade, despite knowing it lacked the votes to pass. The vote failed, with Democrat Joe Manchin joining all 50 Republicans in opposition. If the leaked opinion becomes final, the decision would effectively remove court-mandated federal protections for the right to pre-viability abortions, and move the question of legal abortion to state (and perhaps federal) legislatures. The Supreme Court's official decision is expected this summer.
Sources across the spectrum have highlighted how majority support for Roe among the U.S. public and across demographics could work against Republicans in November's midterm elections, though some on both sides are divided over how much it would help Democrats and harm Republicans. Voices on both sides also criticized the protests at justices' homes; while some on the left vocally supported them.
Voices on the left tend to focus more on how millions of women could lose abortion access and how overturning Roe could lead to other court precedents being overturned. Voices on the right have focused more on the evolution of President Joe Biden's stance on abortion, and many sources on the right frame the protests at justices' homes and the Wisconsin incident as evidence that pro-life people are under attack for their beliefs.
More from AllSides:
Get AllSides in your Inbox
The legality of abortion is a very divisive issue, but there are many areas of agreement within the broader debate.
AllSides Director of Media Bias Ratings Julie Mastrine joined the Saving Elephants podcast to discuss all things about bias in the media.
Snippets from the Right
Draft Supreme Court ruling puts abortion in spotlight in Georgia GOP primary battle
"Former Sen. David Perdue, who is trailing incumbent Gov. Brian Kemp in polls by double digits, is working to convince voters that he is the more pro-life candidate. He is pledging to impose an all-out ban on abortion if the Supreme Court ultimately overturns the constitutional right to abortion."
Pro-Abortion Protesters Inflict Mother's Day Violence and Target Supreme Court Justices' Homes
"The leaked Supreme Court draft opinion signaling the end of Roe v. Wade made Mother's Day an anxious one for churches and pro-life groups across the country. In Madison, Wisconsin, vandals attacked the offices of the pro-life group Wisconsin Family Action on Sunday with an arson attack and a spray-painted warning that 'If abortions aren’t safe, then you aren’t either.'"
Snippets from the Left
Congress “Certainly Could” Ban Abortion Nationwide, McConnell Says
"Thirteen states, including McConnell’s home state of Kentucky, have passed “trigger laws” in anticipation of Roe being struck down. The bills would ban abortion statewide as soon as the Supreme Court reversed the Roe ruling. The draft opinion still isn’t in effect, but its leak will only embolden other GOP-led state legislatures to follow suit."
Blue states are preparing to become abortion safe havens
"Anticipating the absence of a federally protected right to an abortion, some states have passed their own laws codifying Roe and abortion rights in state law. States including Illinois, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Massachusetts have had those laws on the books for years. New Jersey, Colorado, and Connecticut enacted measures earlier this year, and it looks like California will soon join them."
Snippets from the Center
Yellen: Eliminating abortion rights would have "very damaging" effect on economy
"Eliminating a woman's right to seek an abortion would have 'very damaging effects on the economy and would set women back decades,' Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said while testifying before the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee on Tuesday. Yellen's comments come one week after a leaked draft ruling revealed that the Supreme Court is prepared to potentially overturn Roe v. Wade."
Wide partisan gaps in abortion attitudes, but opinions in both parties are complicated
Pew Research Center (data)
"Currently, 80% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents say abortion should be legal in all or most cases, up from 72% in 2016 and 63% in 2007. Republicans’ views have shown far less change over time: Currently, 38% of Republicans and GOP leaners say abortion should be legal in all or most cases."