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The Supreme Court's Abortion Decision and the Future of Constitutional Rights

Is the erosion of Roe v. Wade a harbinger of things to come under an increasingly conservative Supreme Court and federal judiciary?

The days of federally protected abortion rights in the U.S. may soon be over. As a majority-conservative Supreme Court considers a case that could effectively overturn Roe v. Wade, legal experts are beginning to look toward the decision's potentially far-reaching legal implications. 

In jeopardy is “not just the future of Roe, but the future of constitutional rights in general,” said legal expert Bill Blum in a recent Roundtable discussion. “Are we going to expand individual rights, or are we going to contract them? And if we contract them, who's going to benefit?”

“At stake is really the future of this country,” added lawyer Sharon Kyle. 

Kyle went on to note a current lack of abortion access in her liberal home state of California, which has suffered from the general rollback of abortion rights nationwide. Depending on the outcome of the impending decision, she emphasized that any reduction of the right enshrined by Roe would force millions of American women seeking abortions to travel long distances to access services. 

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“Studies show that women would have to travel 250 miles or more in 22 states,” Kyle said, noting that women of color and women from low-income backgrounds would be disproportionately affected. 

Watch the full discussion: