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US Supreme Court Overturns Roe v. Wade Ruling

View the official Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization opinion of the Supreme Court here.

Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, Synopsis

Case Background

Sole facility providing abortion services in Mississippi, as well as one of its abortion providers, brought action against state officials responsible for overseeing health care and medical licensing, challenging constitutionality of Mississippi's Gestational Age Act which prohibited abortions after 15 weeks' gestation except in medical emergency or in case of severe fetal abnormality. The United States District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi, Carlton Reeves, J., 349 F.Supp.3d 536, granted facility's motion to limit discovery to the issue of viability, granted plaintiffs' summary judgment motion, and permanently enjoined the Act in all applications. Defendants appealed. The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, Higginbotham, Senior Circuit Judge, 945 F.3d 265, affirmed. Certiorari was granted.

Holdings

The Supreme Court, Justice Alito, held that:

  1. Federal constitution does not provide a right to abortion, and authority to regulate abortion must be returned to the people and their elected representatives, overruling Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, 93 S.Ct. 705, 35 L.Ed.2d 147, and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, 112 S.Ct. 2791, 120 L.Ed.2d 674, and abrogating June Medical Services L.L.C. v. Russo, 140 S.Ct. 2103, Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt, 136 S.Ct. 2292, Colautti v. Frankin, 99 S.Ct. 675, and other cases, and
  2. on rational-basis review for constitutional violation, legitimate interests supported Mississippi's Gestational Age Act.

Reversed and Remanded

  • Justice Thomas filed a concurring opinion.
  • Justice Kavanaugh filed a concurring opinion.
  • Chief Justice Roberts filed an opinion concurring in the judgment
  • Justices Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan filed a dissenting opinion.

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