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Will the Justices Let Go of Abortion?

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Wednesday in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. On Friday, under the court’s usual procedure, the justices would meet to hold a preliminary vote on their decision. A member of the majority will be assigned to write it. The court will review and amend that document and is expected to hand down its decision at the end of its term, in late June or early July.

This will be an intense and dramatic time for the court, which will likely decide one of two things. It may overturn 1973’s Roe v. Wade decision. That wouldn’t make abortion illegal in the U.S. but would revert the question to each state legislature. Some, through legislation designed to be triggered at the overturning of Roe, will guarantee full abortion on demand, as New York and California already have. Some will apply limits—15 weeks in the case of the Mississippi law the justices are considering. Some will likely ban all or nearly all abortions within their boundaries.


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