Abortion and the Law in America- Roe v. Wade to the Present by Mary Ziegler

“Between 1973 and 2019, the conflict has centered bot so much on laws criminalizing abortion outright as the quest for incremental restrictions designed to undermine Roe v. Wade. And with this change in emphasis, the struggle has increasingly turned not only on rights-based trumps but also on claims about policy costs and benefits for women, families and larger society… when making arguments about the costs and benefits of abortion, activist on either side primarily discussed not what the Constitution allowed but whether legal abortion was socially, culturally, personally, and medically desirable or justified. Consequence-based arguments put greater emphasis on the reasons that individuals might choose or oppose abortion rather than on individual liberty from the state”(Ziegler 2)

Summary: Pro-life groups like NRLC and AUL looked for laws that would in the short term, reduce the abortion rate. In justifying abortion-funding restrictions, pro-lifers highlighted what they described as societal costs of paying for abortion (Ziegler 7).

Summary: Pro-choice groups like ACLU pushed courts to view the reality of effects of funding prohibitions on taxpayers and low-income women…showing the shift in the change in public attitudes about poverty and social welfare (Ziegler 7).

The Roe Decision

Without pinning down exactly where in the Constitution it was found, Roe held that the right to privacy was ‘broad enough to encompass a woman’s decion whether or not to terminate her pregnancy.: Roe identified ways in which the choice to terminate a pregnancy resembled other important decisions related to marriage childbirth, parenting and family. The court framed the right to abortion as a natural extension of the Court’s existing precedents. THe court futher illuminated the potential costs of unintended pregnancy including “psychological harm” , “a distressful life and future,” the burden of childcare, and the stigma of unwed motherhood.

(fetus is a person under the fourteenth amendment) “but after surveying the use of the word ‘person’ in the Constitution text, Justice Blackman concluded that it applied only after birth”(Ziegler 23).

Defending the Conscience of Taxpayers

“These pro-lifers stressed funding bans protected taxpayers’ wallets as well as their conscience…describing the painful costs of funding what they saw as an abhorrent procedure”(Ziegler 37).

“(Duggan explained) ‘We hear frequently about freedom of choice for abortion… So I conclude that there must be freedom of choice not to subsidize this abhorrent procedure”

Although tax fraud was risky

funding ban struggle came at a transition time for NARAL-unorganized, expanding (Ziegler 40).

Why was abortion that limit of the spending of governmental funds? “Barlett highlighted what he described as the unique costs of forcing taxpayers to support a procedure they opposed. The Senator compared abortion funding tobacco subsidies, describing both as harmful and morally objectable. Hyde himself insisted that abortion was unique… urged colleagues: ‘you cannot in logic and conscience fund the destruction of this innocent human life.”(Ziegler 43).

Summary Maher v. Roe: Connecticut welfare ban that restricted medicaid funding on abortion unless “medically necessary”. Lucy Kratz and Catherine Roraback of planned parenthood league took on the unconstitutional conditions approach in writing the brief. This doctrine stated that they are constitutional limits on the ability of the government to inhibit barriers to the excersising of a fundamental right, especially if the restriction of funding was involved. Their brief did not focus on the discrimination of the poor but rather on the logic that if states chose to fund any services related to reproduction, lawmakers could not leave out abortion. Katz and Roraback also developed a new approach that had seemed to succeed in courts in the past. Courts struck down laws that “Unduly burdened. . . the right to seek an abortion.’ “to identify such an undue burden, the Court had to look below the surface of law to understand ‘the actual impact on the abortion decision.’ Even so The Court upheld the regulation, stating that equal protection does not require a state participating in the Medicaid program to pay for abortions for poor women simply because it pays for expenses related to childbirth. Maher started a broader conversation about the root cause of these women not being able to afford an abortion. While abortion-rights lawyers argued that it was because of the numerous restrictions and funding barriers, Antiabortion lawyers insisted that the it was “a form poverty of poverty that had nothing to do with the state.” The Supreme Court agreed (Ziegler 45).

Antiabortion organization found it easier to defend funding bans than it had been to win Roe.”After all, funding prohibitions did not authorize criminal charges, much less prison time”. As well as the fact that tax revolts and anti welfare ideals were on the rise in the 1970s(Ziegler 44).

“The court asserted that the government could permissibly encourage women to choose childbirth over abortion by encouraging the former and excluding the latter”(Ziegler 46).

Summary: NARAL and Planned Parenthood began to focus on the political game. They had to make sure people like Henry Hyde did not get elected in the first place. The Hyde amendment and funding bans became less part of the abortion rights dialouge because the funding bans seemed indifferent to many white voters who gravitated to arguments about choice(Ziegler 48).

Summary: Senator Bahr said to Senator Jesse Helms who cosponsored Hyde, there was a “remarkable parallel between people who vote against finacing abortion and those who vote against funding education, housing, and rat control”(Ziegler 49).

(political landscape at the time) Reagan sought to shrink welfare programs(Ziegler 54 ).

Harris V. McRae

. . . expanded on the logic of Maher. The court noted that the Hyde amendment placed ‘no govermental obstacle in the path of a woman choosing to terminate her pregnancy but. . .encouraged an alternative.’ . . .McRae made arguments about the costs of abortion restrictions an important part of constitutional doctrine. The Court insisted that there had been no retreat from Roe. . . McRae suggested the clashing movements would have to make claims about the real-world effects of both abortion and laws regulating it” (Ziegler 54 ).

Here I would go into the turnaway study and cycle of poverty and real experience of women

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