Dawn Laguens, the Executive Vice President of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, said at a press conference in D.C. Thursday that any Supreme Court nominee must be held to the “higher standard” of agreeing that women have a right to abortion and contraception as well as affirming LGBT rights.
Planned Parenthood and a coalition of abortion groups argued for a new “personal liberty standard” for SCOTUS nominees.
Laguens argued that past nominees have said of Roe v. Wade that they would “respect precedent” but then, as justices, have gone on to “rule in ways that ignore precedent.”
“Clearly saying precedent alone can no longer be an acceptable answer or standard by which senators can accurately judge,” Laguens claimed.
She said the groups were “calling for a higher standard.”
“We are calling for a personal liberty standard,” she continued. “The Senate must only confirm a justice who firmly declares that the constitution protects individual liberty and the right of all people to make personal decisions about their bodies and relationships, including the right to have contraception, the right to an abortion, and to marry the person who you choose.”
Ilyse Hogue, president of the abortion advocacy group NARAL, said that this "personal liberty" standard was necessary and any of President Trump’s list of Supreme court picks would “decimate our rights as enshrined under Roe.”
She called Justice Gorsuch, for example, “an ideological mercenary,” who proved his critics right.
“We believe that they must incorporate this personal liberty standard not only because of what’s at stake but because that’s what their constituents want them to do,” she concluded.
Hogue cited a recent Pew poll showing that 7 in 10 Americans do not support “completely” overturning Roe v. Wade.
However, a recent Gallup poll found that a majority, 53 percent, of Americans do believe in restrictions on the legality of abortion.