Abortion could be banned in 22 states over the next two years as the Supreme Court moves even further to the right under new Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
Monday evening, President Donald Trump appointed judge, who was previously the personnel secretary to President George W. Bush, replacing retired Judge Anthony Kennedy, widely regarded as a voter swinging between liberal and conservative causes. The nomination would create a majority of five Tory Supreme Court justices and pave the way for Roe v. Wade, the case that made abortion federally legal in 1973.
Kavanaugh has ruled on only one abortion case in his 12 years as a member of the United States Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit. In that case, Kavanaugh spoke out against the request of a 17-year-old undocumented minor detained by the Department of Health and Human Services who was seeking an abortion, in favor of an 11-day delay to access to the procedure.
“Its interpretation would not significantly protect the right to abortion for this young woman for whom time was running out,” Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights, said in a statement.
Asset said previously he would only appoint judges who would overthrow Roe v. Wade. When asked by Chris Wallace in 2016 if he wanted to see the court overturn Roe, Trump replied, “Well, if we put two or maybe three more judges, that’s really what’s going to happen – it will happen.” and [repealing Roe] will happen automatically in my opinion because I put pro-life judges on the field. ”
However, Kavanaugh said 12 years ago during his confirmation hearing before the Court of Appeal. that he would follow Roe v. Wade “Faithfully and fully”. He added: “This has been reaffirmed on several occasions.”
If the previous Roe is overturned, 22 U.S. states will immediately ban abortion, according to the Center for Reproductive Rights. Four states in the United States – Louisiana, Mississippi, North Dakota, and South Dakota – have trigger laws that automatically ban proceedings if Roe is canceled, and the remaining 18 have existing bans that could become more restrictive without Roe v. Wade.
Cases that could force the court to reconsider abortion rights are currently pending before the courts and could reach the Supreme Court within two years. At least one of them will likely be heard by the United States Court of Appeals by January 2019, said Fatima Goss-Graves, president and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center.
President Donald Trump previously told Fox News that access to abortion may soon be decided by states. “Maybe one day it will be in the United States, you never know how it’s going to turn out,” he said. “It’s a very complex question. During his 2016 campaign, Trump said women who have abortions should be punished, but his campaign then backed down on that statement.
Anti-abortion groups hailed Kavanaugh’s appointment
Anti-abortion groups, including March for Life and Priests for Life, have welcomed Kavanaugh’s appointment. “There is just no other way to look at this appointment than to say this is a great choice for President Trump,” said Mario Diaz, general counsel for the anti-abortion group Concerned Women for America.
Access to abortion is already limited in many states in the United States. In dozens of cities, women have to travel more than 100 miles each way to reach an abortion center.
The average cost of an abortion is $ 508, according to reproductive rights research organization Guttmacher Institute, but the cost is continually increased by restrictions, studies show. Laws that require a consultation and a waiting period before an abortion increase the cost of the procedure by an average of $ 107, according to a 2015 study from California State University, Long Beach. This same study showed that 25 more doctors per 100,000 residents can reduce the cost of abortion by $ 78.
Access to abortion has a number of financial implications. Women who are denied the procedure are much more likely to experience poverty in the years that follow, according to a 2018 study from the American Journal of Public Health. According to the study, women who could not have an abortion were four times more likely to have a family income below the federal poverty line and three times more likely to be unemployed after six months.