What Roe v. Wade’s End Could Mean for LGBTQ+ Rights
Gender-affirming care could be in jeopardy and gay marriage could face an uncertain future.
By Julie Moreau
The leaked initial draft of a Supreme Court majority opinion revealing the landmark Roe v. Wade abortion ruling has been overturned has advocates worried about what the precedent’s reversal could mean for the LGBTQ community’s recently gained rights.
In the leaked draft opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, published by Politico early last month, the high court, in a majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito, upheld Mississippi’s law banning abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy and overturned both Roe and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, effectively ruling that there is no constitutional right to abortion.
Should the official decision mirror the leaked draft, LGBTQ advocates worry about the immediate implications on LGBTQ health and whether the court’s willingness to overturn precedent could extend to the 2015 landmark Supreme Court case Obergefell v. Hodges, which Alito and Justice Clarence Thomas have already signaled they would like to reverse.
However, LGBTQ advocates caution against too much speculation about the fate of same-sex marriage, and instead urge attention to the immediate impact caused by a reversal of the Roe and the Casey rulings and the ongoing attacks on LGBTQ rights at the state levels.
“The threat to women and to reproductive rights is already enough,” Evan Wolfson, the founder of Freedom to Marry, told NBC News. “The threat to the freedom to marry is real, but there are even bigger and more imminent dangers that we need to address, and if we address those dangers, we will protect ourselves against the potential threat to the freedom to marry that may be down the road.”
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