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Connecticut lawmakers react to leaked draft opinion from Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade

Connecticut State Supreme Court Roe v. Wade reproductive rights
Mark Mirko
/
Connecticut Public
Demonstrators, including Dawn Merritt, gather outside the Connecticut State Supreme Court in response to a leaked draft opinion from the U.S. Supreme Court that appears to overturn Roe v. Wade. “The Supreme Court is not impartial anymore,” said Merritt. “It seems like our justice system has been preyed upon.”

Politico is reporting that a leaked draft opinion from the U.S. Supreme Court will overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v, Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

Chief Justice John Roberts confirmed the authenticity of the draft opinion Tuesday morning, though he noted it doesn’t represent the court’s final position.

The majority opinion is in response to a challenge to a Mississippi ban on abortion after 15 weeks. The court is expected to officially rule on Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization in late June or early July.

Connecticut's Democratically controlled General Assembly anticipated such a ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court and recently passed legislation meant to shield residents from facing penalties under other states' anti-abortion laws. The bill also expands the type of medical professionals who can perform the most common form of abortion procedure. The bill now waits for Gov. Ned Lamont to sign it into law.

Reaction from Connecticut lawmakers was swift:

Gov. Ned Lamont (D)
"Our state continues to take the steps necessary to protect and expand reproductive rights ... we will do everything in our power to defend abortion rights in Connecticut."

U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D)
"If true, this decision would be a horrific moment inflicting a huge leap backward with incalculable costs & chaos for countless women & their families."

U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy (D)
"This is devastating news. But remember, in a democracy, no decision is final. Now it's up to us to build a movement that makes sure women - not politicians or governments - control decisions about their bodies and their health care."

U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D)
"I am horrified, ashamed, and angry. If the Supreme Court of the United States rules as this draft is written, this opinion will go down in history as a stain on our country."

U.S. Rep. Jahana Hayes (D)
The Supreme Court is dangerously close to overturning Roe. Congress must act to enshrine the protections of Roe v. Wade and pass the Womens Health Protection Act. Abortion access and reproductive care for tens of millions of women is essential. We are going to fight this!

U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney (D)
“The 98-page draft opinion released last night, if accurate, is a full-throated attack on Supreme Court case law that has been painstakingly built over decades to protect the right of privacy for all Americans.”

CT Attorney General William Tong (D)
"One thing is clear tonight — this decision changes everything. We must be clear-eyed and realistic about how bad this is, and what this potential decision, and this catastrophic leak, signals for every single major legal question before the Court."

Bob Stefanowski, candidate for governor (R)
Bob Stefanowski, a Republican candidate for governor, issued a statement: “The leaked Supreme Court opinion doesn’t change anything here in Connecticut. In Connecticut, a woman’s right to choose is fully protected under state law.”

Bill O'Brien, Connecticut Right to Life
Connecticut Right to Life Vice President Bill O'Brien says overturning Roe vs. Wade is important because of the tens of millions of abortions that have taken place in the United States since the 1973 decision. If the Supreme Court does overturn Roe V. Wade, O'Brien says he will continue to work to ban abortion in the states where it would still be legal. O'Brien says he is disappointed that the draft ruling would not ban abortion outright across the country.

Jennifer Ahrens is a producer for Morning Edition. After spending 20+ years producing TV shows for CNN and ESPN, she decided to tackle a new medium because she values Public Broadcasting's mission. She wants to educate and entertain an audience and Connecticut Public lets her do that.
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