A dozen Republican governors teamed up to file a joint amicus brief this week asking the U.S. Supreme Court to “correct” its previous decisions in both Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood of Southeast Pennsylvania v. Casey.
In the brief for Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, governors from Montana, Texas, Florida, Arizona, Iowa, Idaho, South Carolina, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Missouri, and Oklahoma tell the court that “the judicial constitutionalization of abortion represents an unwarranted intrusion into the sovereign sphere of the States” and asks justices to “Return to the States the plenary authority to regulate abortion without federal interference.”
“For too long, the Federal Government has dived (not just waded) into issues reserved to the States under the Constitution. Although those forays usually come from the political branches, they have, on occasion, come from this Court as well. Roe and Casey are quintessential examples of such misadventures,” the brief states.
“The Court should take this opportunity to correct the mistakes in its abortion jurisprudence and recognize that the text and original understanding of the Fourteenth Amendment have nothing to do with abortion,” the brief continues. “Rather than creating a federal constitutional right, the Court should leave regulating abortion to the States, where the people may act through the democratic process. This Court should hold as much — and in the process, help restore the constitutional (but currently disrupted) balance between the Federal Government and the States.”
The abortion restriction at issue in Dobbs was first enacted in Mississippi in 2018 and allowed abortions after the 15-week date for “medical emergencies” and “severe” fetal abnormalities. Lower courts, however, including the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit, blocked the law and ruled that it places an undue burden on women who want to abort their child after the state’s deadline.
The Supreme Court chose to take up the case, which asks whether “all pre-viability prohibitions on elective abortions are
unconstitutional,” in May and is expected to hear arguments this fall.
Republican Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas, Josh Hawley of Missouri, and Mike Lee of Utah also banded together on Monday to submit an amicus brief asking the high court to overrule Roe and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey.