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Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade protections for abortion

Abortion opponents see the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court as an opportunity to push for further abortion restrictions. Abortion supporters are preparing for a fight.
Abortion opponents see the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court as an opportunity to push for further abortion restrictions. Abortion supporters are preparing for a fight.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled to overturn Roe v. Wade which for five decades guaranteed the constitutional right to an abortion. Today’s ruling activates trigger laws to ban abortion in more than a dozen states.

The 6-to-3 ruling was led by the conservative majority and three liberal Supreme Court justices dissented. The Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization case was brought to the court by Mississippi’s only abortion provider after a majority Republican state legislature passed an abortion ban after 15 weeks.

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito said that while the Fourteenth Amendment affords Americans the right to "liberty" there are no references to abortion.

"The Court finds that the right to abortion is not deeply rooted in the Nation’s history and tradition," Alito wrote. "No such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision."

Three justices appointed by former President Donald Trump ruled in favor of eliminating the right to an abortion.

A draft of the Supreme court opinion was leaked by Politico in early May.

Access to abortion services in Maryland remains in effect and abortion rights have been largely secure in Maryland for the last three decades.

Maryland’s fetal homicide law, which took effect in 2005, is still on the books, which means an aborted fetus can be considered a murder victim but only for ‘viable’ fetuses.

Kristen Mosbrucker is a digital news editor and producer for WYPR.