That’s the name of Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee. And now, the Court is closer than ever to overturning Roe v. Wade – the landmark ruling that guaranteed over 40 years ago that every woman has a fundamental right to a safe, legal abortion.
Make no mistake: as a federal judge, Brett Kavanaugh has ruled against women time and time again. It’s no wonder he was hand-picked by Trump and right-wing elites who dream of seeing Roe v. Wade overturned.
Imagining a Supreme Court with Brett Kavanaugh on the bench makes me sick to my stomach. His career includes:
- Trying to prevent a young immigrant woman from accessing a safe, legal abortion
- Siding with employers against women’s access to birth control
On The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, I talked about how Trump has got the trifecta with Brett Kavanaugh: someone to overturn Roe v. Wade, rollback healthcare for millions of Americans, and protect his back if he gets into serious criminal trouble. Not on my watch, and not without a fight.
Posted by Elizabeth Warren on Tuesday, July 10, 2018
Here are a few things I want you to know about Roe v. Wade and Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination.
1. Women could lose control over their own bodies
If Kavanaugh is confirmed and the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, women could no longer have a fundamental right to access safe, legal abortion in the United States.
This means that millions of women would be at risk of losing access to safe abortion services — and losing control of their own bodies in the process. In many states, it could no longer be up to women when and if they want to start a family.
When I was a girl growing up in Oklahoma, women got abortions. But because those procedures were illegal, many of them ended up with back alley butchers. And we all heard the stories: women who bled to death or died from an infection. We can’t go back to a time when women had to put their lives on the line.
2. Certain women will be impacted more than others
Overturning Roe v. Wade would be a body blow to women with low incomes — especially women of color and women in rural areas.
Women pay an average of $535 to have an abortion during the first 9 weeks of pregnancy and pay even more in the second trimester. As states erect more barriers to abortion, women are forced to travel farther, take more time off work and pay higher fees to terminate pregnancies. These financial barriers fall hardest on the majority of abortion patients who are young or have little income.
3. Abortion access = economic security
Roe v. Wade changed the economic futures of millions of women for the better. In the United States alone, 40% of women report seeking abortions because they aren’t “financially prepared” to have a child.
For a young couple with modest wages and piles of student loan debt, the decision to start or expand a family is a powerful economic issue. In fact, middle-income parents with two kids will spend nearly $13,000 a year to raise a child, and that cost is rising.
The bottom line? Access to safe abortion services gives women more control over their finances and their futures.
4. Americans overwhelmingly support Roe v. Wade
If Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed and the Supreme Court overturns this longstanding precedent, it will do so in spite of the popular opinion of most Americans. Sixty-seven percent of Americans support Roe v. Wade.
Abortion access is basic health care, plain and simple. In fact, one in four women will access an abortion in their lifetime. It’s one of the most common medical procedures out there — and today, it’s even safer than getting your tonsils out.
5. The Supreme Court’s decisions could get even MORE extreme
Many of the Supreme Court’s recent decisions have undermined the very foundations of our democracy and chipped away at our civil liberties.
Last month, the Supreme Court delivered bad decision after bad decision. By radically divided 5-4 votes, the right-wing of the Court upheld Donald Trump’s bigoted Muslim ban, reversed decades of precedent to undermine America’s unions, allowed politicians to disenfranchise minority voters through racial gerrymandering and kicking voters off the voter rolls, and ruled that unlicensed so-called “Crisis Pregnancy Centers” are free to deliberately lie to women about their health.
Whew. I’m almost out of breath — and that was just June. One thing is clear: if Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed, the Supreme Court will continue ruling against working families. That’s exactly what happened with Justice Neil Gorsuch, who was the deciding vote in all of these dangerous decisions.
Confirming Brett Kavanaugh to the highest court in the land would mean more bad decisions for GENERATIONS to come. This is in addition to the 150 federal judicial court vacancies that Trump is trying to fill with more anti-worker, anti-abortion nominees. Our rights are on the line — women’s health, workers’ rights, voting rights, marriage equality, the Affordable Care Act, and more.
6. Hurting women = Trump’s agenda
Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell, and the rest of their gang want to control every part of women’s health – from attacking Planned Parenthood patients to denying access to birth control.
As I write this, we know they’re already maneuvering to shove Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination through the Senate just like they did with Neil Gorsuch.
This is the moment they’ve been waiting for – but we won’t go back on Roe v. Wade and women’s health. Not now, not ever.