Herring commits to defending abortion access at Supreme Court
The U.S. Supreme Court is taking up a lawsuit challenging Mississippi’s restrictive abortion ban that has the potential to overturn landmark cases Roe v. Wade and Casey v. Planned Parenthood.
Mississippi’s law limits the time period when a woman can get an abortion, making it illegal after just 15 weeks.
Attorney General Mark Herring on Monday committed his office to defending a woman’s right to choose.
“The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to take up this case is incredibly concerning and has the potential to overturn landmark abortion rights cases, especially given the incredibly conservative makeup of the Court,” Herring said. “For over 50 years, Roe v. Wade has protected a woman’s right to making the best health care decisions for her body and overturning it would send this country back decades and have dangerous and potentially deadly consequences for women’s health across the country.
“Health care and reproductive health decisions should be made between a woman and her doctor, without the government unnecessarily involving themselves. Abortion is constitutional in this country and no matter what the outcome of this case, I will not stop fighting to ensure that every woman in Virginia has access to safe reproductive health care,” Herring said.
In 2019, Herring filed an amicus brief in this lawsuit in support of Mississippi’s last abortion clinic, Jackson Women’s Health Organization, arguing that Mississippi’s law enacted a near-total ban on abortions. In the amicus, Herring asserted that the law restricts women from exercising their constitutional right to terminate a pregnancy under Roe v. Wade. He further argued that contrary to Mississippi’s claims, its near-total ban would result in worse maternal health outcomes.
Additionally, in 2017, Herring issued an opinion concluding that similar abortion restrictions are unconstitutional and he and his team worked to prevent similar legislation from being passed in Virginia.