Roe: An Interesting Point of Clarification

Care of Le Mew:
So, to return to my original point, anybody who says that overturning Roe will "return the issue to the states" doesn't know what they're talking about. … Abortion is not a "state" issue, and it's not going to become a state issue.

And, of course, these arguments are a subset of the bizarrely frequent "Overturning Roe is no big deal" arguments, which are wrong with varying degrees of sillyness. In the wake of Roe many states will ban abortion, and both states and the federal government will pass all kinds of bad regulations. Don't believe the ludicrously implausible alternative scenarios ("[Kos]We just need a constitutional amendment entrenching the right to privacy! Because none of the many reactionary legislators who would have to vote for such a thing will figure out that abortion rights have been framed as privacy rights in both constitutional law and public discourse since the Nixon Administration! If those silly NARAL people would just read this cutting-edge AMA position paper from 1966, they'd understand something about abortion activism!"[/Kos]) Overturning Roe will 1)not "send the issue back to the states", and 2)will have very, very bad consequences.
Read his whole post for a detailed explanation. I’ve never bought into the argument that abortion could (or should) be a state issue, and I’ve always argued on general principle against those who suggest it wouldn’t be such a big deal—no one should have to travel hundreds of miles for an abortion, and many women might not be able to, considering that poverty is often a main consideration in opting for an abortion. That said, the whole argument is moot from a legal perspective, and Scott really helped me wrap my head around that.

I’ve drawn no concrete conclusions about Roberts from the little bit of his confirmation hearing I’ve been able to listen to, which I realize basically leaves me straddling the fence on him as I’ve been all along. I’ve read liberals who are going apeshit about how horrible he is, and I’ve read liberals who seem to be taking a pragmatic line about how we could have been stuck with a lot worse, and I genuinely respect both opinions. But so far, I’m leaning toward pragmatism; he seems to be meeting my first impression fairly head-on, which is that he’s nowhere near as bad as I would have expected from Bush. I certainly wouldn’t cast a vote for him, but I’m not sure that filibustering him will garner us someone we like better. That’s why winning elections is important, etc.

Any thoughts on the hearing so far?

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