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Mississippi Gov. Reeves on Upcoming SCOTUS Abortion Case: Roe v. Wade Was Wrongly Decided

AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis

On NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday, Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves (R) discussed an upcoming Supreme Court case that could overturn landmark case Roe v. Wade. In the segment, Reeves claimed that Roe was “wrongly decided” and that the Constitution allows states to make laws to limit abortion access.

Oral arguments for the upcoming case, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, will be heard by the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) on Wednesday. The case, which began in 2018, surrounds a law that implemented a 15-week abortion ban in Mississippi. Jackson Women’s Health Organization is the state’s only abortion clinic.

“I think that this law can be enacted within a changing confinement of Roe v. Wade, but I also believe that Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided,” Reeves said to host Chuck Todd in the segment. 

“I believe in a simple reading of the U.S. Constitution, that when Roe was decided in 1973, there is no fundamental right in our United States Constitution to an abortion. And furthermore Chuck, I believe very strongly that if you read the Constitution, there is nowhere in the Constitution that prohibits individual states, states like Mississippi, to limit access to abortions,” Reeves added.

Another landmark abortion case, Planned Parenthood v. Casey, could also be overturned as a result of Dobbs. Reeves believes Casey was another wrongly decided case.

“I also believe some 20 years later, in 1992, Casey was incorrectly decided. If you look at the Casey ruling, what you find, in my opinion, is a ruling that was not based upon the fundamentals of the Constitution, but a ruling that was determined based upon what the perceived political perception at that time. And I don’t think the judicial branch of government should ever allow politics to play into their decision making and I think they did in Casey,” Reeves explained.

In July, Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch filed an amicus brief where she asked SCOTUS directly to overturn both Roe and Casey.

Roe and Casey are egregiously wrong. The conclusion that abortion is a constitutional right has no basis in text, structure, history, or tradition,” Fitch said in the brief. “So the question becomes whether this Court should overrule those decisions. It should.”

In her brief, Fitch argued that the precedents set by both Roe and Casey are outdated. 

“Today, adoption is accessible and on a wide scale women attain both professional success and a rich family life, contraceptives are more available and effective, and scientific advances show that an unborn child has taken on the human form and features months before viability. States should be able to act on those developments. But Roe and Casey shackle States to a view of the facts that is decades out of date,” Fitch added.

“The Constitution does not protect a right to abortion. The Constitution’s text says nothing about abortion. Nothing in the Constitution’s structure implies a right to abortion or prohibits States from restricting it,” Fitch concluded in the brief. “Casey repeats Roe’s flaws by failing to tie a right to abortion to anything in the Constitution. And abortion is fundamentally different from any right this Court has ever endorsed. No other right involves, as abortion does, ‘the purposeful termination of a potential life.’”

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