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2/24/2006 10:56:00 AM | Justin

Will Bush Eventually Overturn Rowe?

Prochoice republicans in new york I talk to tend to think the abortion issue is just a decoy, and that Bush would never overturn Rowe, simply because of the backlash it would provoke. But the fight seems to have just begun in South Dakota, where a bill is about to pass that bans ALL types of abortion except when the health of the mother is threatened.

This law is obviously in direct contradiction to Rowe v Wade and Parenthood v Casey. What's interesting is that the Gov. Mike Rounds of S.D. vetoed the same bill 2 years ago despite his publically stated interest in overturning Rowe:

"I do think that this court will ultimately take apart Roe v. Wade one step at a time," Rounds said.

It is clear that his decision to veto was purely strategic, because in his view "the best way to approach the elimination of abortion is one step at a time", rather than through a "frontal attack".

But now that Alito and Roberts are on the bench, there are only "5 pro-rowe judges", one of whom (Stevens) is very close to retiring. So by Rounds's political calculus, the supreme court might actually be ripe for a frontal assault on Rowe once this case makes it through the judicial pipeline.

Another oft stated argument is that Rowe won't actually be overturned, just weakened. But as Bush implied in his speech, if Dred Scott was overturned, why not Rowe?

Pro-choice republicans who are oblivious to this threat need to either take their blinders off, or admit that abortion rights simply aren't very important to them.



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