Breaking news on abortion: the decision on Roe v. Wade takes effect

Minutes after the Supreme Court quashed the Roe v. Wade case on Friday, Missouri’s attorney general issued an opinion banning abortion in his state. Abortion clinics in several cities, including Montgomery, Alabama, and Sioux Falls, SD, have closed. But others in Illinois and Ohio continued to see patients.

At a Phoenix clinic, 40 women waited to make appointments, forcing staff to scramble to find out if they were still allowed to perform abortions. “We sent a group of people home, and they were hysterical,” said Dr. Gabrielle Goodrick, the clinic’s owner.

In Ohio, Candice Keller, a former state representative who sponsored a law banning abortion after six weeks of pregnancy, broke down in tears of joy. “I just started crying,” Ms Keller said. “It was a real battle. It felt like you would never win. But we won.”

Roe’s overthrow on Friday, stunning even though it was long anticipated, sparked waves of triumph and despair, with protesters on every side massed outside the Supreme Court, at abortion clinics and crisis pregnancy centers, and in texts with friends and popping social media feeds.

The split-screen reaction reflected a polarized nation: jubilation and relief on one side, outrage and grief on the other.

“If I had confetti, I’d throw it high,” said Dale Bartscher, director of South Dakota Right to Life. “Today we celebrate a day we have long dreamed of, advocated for and worked for: the overcoming of Roe v. Wade.”

Credit…Shuran Huang for The New York Times

David Ripley, the director of Idaho Chooses Life, said he doesn’t think he’ll be alive to see the day when Idaho’s ban on abortion – making it illegal in the fall of Roe – would enter into force.

“The court has finally admitted that its decision and the decisions of the federal courts for the past 50 years were patently wrong,” Mr Ripley said. “I am delighted.”

On the other side, proponents of abortion rights worry for the millions of women living in the vast swath of the country where abortion will be illegal or essentially unavailable due to layers of restrictions that have added expense and delays for women requesting the procedure.

Some women have accumulated abortion pills. A group called Shout Your Abortion has launched a campaign proclaiming #AbortionPillsForever, promising to help them provide them to women in need.

“I knew this was coming but I never expected to feel such anger,” said Amalie Hahn, 49, of Jackson, Mississippi. “You want to ban abortions in the state of Mississippi, but you don’t want to take into account that Mississippi is one of the worst states in which to give birth, if not the worst. We are in the midst of a shortage of formula and poverty is at an all-time high and they’re forcing women to have babies. It’s insane.”

Jackson is home to the clinic, known locally as the Pink House, at the center of the Supreme Court’s decision. Volunteers continued to escort patients inside on Friday, and attorneys said the clinic will continue to offer abortions for the next 10 days, until Mississippi’s trigger ban goes into effect. .

The court’s decision, which was announced during oral arguments in December and again when a draft notice was leaked in May, means that within a month abortion will be banned, with rare exceptions, in 13 States. Opponents and supporters say it will most likely become illegal or inaccessible in about half the states, with 33.6 million women of childbearing age living in states likely to lose access.

Credit…Morgan Lieberman for The New York Times

Millions of Americans have never known a world without a constitutional right to abortion.

In Kansas City, Missouri, one of them, Mallorie McBride, said she was “shocked and horrified” by the Supreme Court’s decision.

“We’re taking so many steps back,” said Ms McBride, 24. “I’ve always believed that older men shouldn’t make decisions about women’s bodies. As a single woman in my twenties, I haven’t felt very represented by my government in a while, but that’s okay. even further.

“It’s also like, what else will happen after this?” said Briana Perry, 30, a board member of Healthy and Free Tennessee, a reproductive rights network in Nashville. “Not only in relation to reproductive rights, but other rights that we have that we believe have been guaranteed by Supreme Court decisions that are now being challenged.”

The Supreme Court ruling calls abortion a “profound moral issue on which Americans have widely differing views.” But while Americans have become more inclined to say abortion is morally acceptable, the issue is very political. Friday’s ruling made it even more important, sending the question of how to regulate abortion back to the states — and into a new, even more polarized era.

Both sides quickly pivoted to the fights ahead.

James Bopp Jr., general counsel for the National Committee for the Right to Life, which has led a crusade against abortion since the Roe ruling in 1973, called Friday’s ruling “a total victory for the pro-life movement and for America”. Yet, he said, the work of anti-abortion forces was “half done”. The group was meeting for its convention in Atlanta when the decision was announced and had already drafted model legislation to ban abortion in all states, with exceptions only for risks to the life of the mother.

“It’s going to be a huge task – there will be a range of forces against us,” Mr Bopp said. “It’s the end of the beginning, as Churchill once said. A huge hurdle has been removed, and now we are going to make sure the law is used to protect the unborn child.

Troy Newman, president of Kansas-based Operation Rescue, which has mounted a long-running blockade of abortion clinics, said the decision still left too much leeway for largely Democratic-led states like his. to allow abortion.

“Now is the time for the pro-life movement to kick up our big boy boots and win over the rest of the states,” he said. “We are going to clean up, bankrupt the remaining dirty and disgusting abortion factories.”

NARAL, the Planned Parenthood Action Fund and other groups have pledged to spend $150 million midterm in 2022 to elect abortion rights supporters to the State Houses and Congress. The Women’s March, which rallied protesters after the election of Donald J. Trump, called for demonstrations in a “Summer of Rage.”

In Conway, Ark., Stacey Margaret Jones, 52, said she keeps thinking about the women she meets while volunteering at Planned Parenthood.

“I feel really hopeless because I feel like there’s nothing I personally could have done differently,” Ms Jones said. She has donated to candidates who support abortion rights, participated in marches and written to her lawmakers. But in a conservative state like Arkansas, she doesn’t feel like her voice is heard. His state senator is Jason Rapert, one of the main sponsors of Arkansas’s trigger law that banned abortion on Friday.

“I’m looking for advice from someone or an organization to say, ‘OK, we knew this could happen and that’s what we’re going to do,'” Ms Jones said.

As protests grew outside the Supreme Court, with supporters and opponents shouting slogans back and forth, Capitol Police sent additional officers to line the barriers blocking the court and the Capitol building on the other side. from the street. They were preparing for larger crowds as people finished their work. By afternoon, protests had closed the nearby Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge.

Credit…Doug Mills/The New York Times

But the divided reaction also played out far from Washington.

In Leawood, Kansas, a protester shouted through an amplifier: “You are killing your child! as Daniel Morrison and his girlfriend arrived in the rain at a Planned Parenthood clinic so she could have an abortion. “You came to a death camp. Babies are murdered here.

Mr Morrison replied: ‘I help my girlfriend, I help her choose’, emphasizing the word ‘choose’.

Mr Morrison said he worked at a restaurant in Oklahoma and his girlfriend volunteered at a shelter for homeless youth, and they were not financially or emotionally prepared for a child.

“I’m not here because I just want to have fun and party more,” Mr Morrison said. “I want to be able to plan a life for a child and be able to support a child with more than just money – to be able to give them time and everything a child would need to be able to develop. Having the choice to do so is very important. I don’t consider this murder.

The Supreme Court’s decision will only cause people pain and hardship, he said.

Across the parking lot, the Advice & Aid pregnancy center had extra security on site Friday morning due to what its executive director, Ruth Tisdale, said were calls for attacks on facilities like the his. Ms Tisdale said the Supreme Court’s ruling was “an exciting time”, but her work needed to continue.

The report was provided by austyn gaffney, Jimmie E. Gates, Carey Gillam, Jack HealyCarolyn Komatsoulis, Tom Lawrence, Erica Sweeney and Kevin Williams.