Several states appear eager to challenge the Supreme Court’s ruling on Roe v Wade, the landmark case that established abortion rights across the nation. Alabama is the first to establish a law in clear defiance of the court’s decision, but Ohio, Missouri, and Georgia are all on track to institute similar restrictions. Supporters of the laws hope to see the Supreme Court re-examine their previous rulings, yet many seem entirely oblivious to the consequence of this legal fight ahead of the 2020 election.
The recent Alabama law outlaws nearly all abortions, even in cases of rape and incest. While these views might be popular among a small minority of Americans, most of whom reside in southern states, the legal fight is extremely unpopular across the rest of the nation. In fact, it is difficult to imagine a more disastrous issue for the GOP.
With the investigation into President Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign fading from the news cycle, Republicans were poised for a successful start to the 2020 election. The economy seems to be doing well, and many of the allegations leveled against the Trump administration during the nearly two-year-long Special Counsel investigation turned out to be false. Democrats have little to show for their time controlling the House of Representatives, and the Green New Deal’s roll out was basically a side show calamity.
The push to overturn Roe v Wade might be the one political issue even more unpopular in the United States than the Democrats’ Green New Deal. The difference is, many Democrats seem well aware of the climate change spending program’s unpopularity. Republicans, on the other hand, seem almost willfully ignorant of the self destruction they’re engaging in.
To say the GOP is shooting themselves in the foot with this fight would be quite an understatement. It would be far more accurate to describe the GOP as being on life support from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, before the 2020 election has even begun. Again, it is difficult to imagine the GOP embracing a more politically disastrous issue ahead of a national election.
It is without a doubt that the Democrats will spend countless resources during the 2020 election connecting Republican politicians to the fight against Roe v Wade, even in elections where the Republican candidate doesn’t support such a move. The same argument will be made toward the presidency, as Democrats will frame the fight as a struggle to prevent the nomination of Supreme Court Justices that will attempt to overturn the decision.
Conservative media outlets have been quick to attempt to defend the law using misleading polling data. Much of their attention is focused on polling that simply requests respondents to define themselves as either pro-life or pro-choice. These news outlets fail to mention that the majority of self described pro-life voters do not actually favor outlawing all abortion, as many are simply personally opposed to the practice.
Critics of Roe v Wade say the decision is flawed, as abortion laws should be left up to the states. Pro-choice proponents argue that abortion is a constitutionally protected service between a woman and a physician, rendering states unable to outlaw the practice.
The Tenth Amendment allows states to restrict behavior not specifically outlined in the Constitution. States may not violate constitutionally protected liberties, such as the freedom of speech or the right to own a firearm. Pro-choice supporters believe the autonomy of a woman’s body and her right to purchase a service from a doctor are both protected by the freedoms outlined in the Bill of Rights.
Any other Republican president would have zero chance of being re-elected in this current political climate. However, Donald Trump is not your average Republican. President Trump has never really portrayed himself as a social conservative, and he may be able to weather this storm thanks to his unusual approach to politics. Although, Republicans can kiss the presidency goodbye if he decides to embrace the fight to overturn Roe v Wade.
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