On May 2, Politico published a damning article on how the U.S. Supreme Court plans to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision. The article rapidly cascaded into the masses, prompting a diverse reaction from both the right and the left of America's political spectrum.
The Supreme Court has voted to strike down Roe v. Wade, according to an initial draft majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito and obtained by POLITICO.
“We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” Alito writes. https://t.co/nl3JFLx9xg
— POLITICO (@politico) May 3, 2022
The draft, titled "Opinion of the Court," was written in February. Politico claimed that the document had circulated inside the supreme court before obtaining a copy.
The National Public Radio's (NPR) Nina Totenberg said, "if this is a fake, it's a very masterful fake."
The Supreme Court verified the authenticity of the leaked documents later that day, explaining that the document "did not represent the court's final view."
A day after the leak was published, demonstrators from different advocacy camps flooded outside of the U.S. Supreme Court.
According to ReligionNews, the polarizing topic has clarified the divide between faith leaders. "A group more divided than many Americans might think," RNS reported.
In the court document, prepared by Justice Samuel Alito, the Supreme Court planned to pass the debate back to state legislatures.
"It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people's elected representatives," the document said.
If enacted by the Supreme Court, this decision will dispel the federal protections on abortion and allow each state's representatives to create their own policies on abortion.
An overwhelming majority of Americans demand the Supreme Court uphold Roe v Wade. Despite this, the dominance of religious groups persists. ReligionDispatches, an independent, non-profit news agency, accused the Supreme Court of being a Christian Nationalist institution.
The constitutional originalism that drove today's Supreme Court Justices to overturn Roe came of age alongside the concept of biblical inerrancy, writes @austinLsteelman. And these twin forces are now having their way with the American political landscape: https://t.co/SkWqZmNDQG
— Religion Dispatches (@RDispatches) May 4, 2022
But there is a divide within the religious groups.
According to a poll conducted by the Washington Post-ABC News, more than 58 percent of Americans want the Supreme Court to uphold Roe v Wade. The poll was conducted between April 24 to 28 and surveyed 1,004 adult Americans.
According to the Washington Post, 66 percent of nonevangelical Protestants want the Supreme Court to uphold Roe v Wade. This is higher than the 64 percent of those who identify with no religion. On the other hand, 55 percent of Catholics support maintaining Roe v Wade.
RNS also published statements from various religious group leaders, showing their varying degrees of support for Roe v Wade.
Greg Laurie, the pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship, and Franklin Graham, head of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, called it an "answered prayer." While Danya Ruttenberg, a rabbi and a scholar at the National Council of Jewish Women, called it a "Jewish case for abortion justice."
If true, SCOTUS will overturn Roe v. Wade. A grave injustice will be corrected. Prayers answered. Now, the church must go over-and-above to care for mothers & their children. https://t.co/gaRVq4Noej
— Greg Laurie (@greglaurie) May 3, 2022
Another rabbi, Rick Jacobs, president of the Union for Reform Judaism, declared that they would fight for abortion rights.
Abortion justice is an economic issue, a racial justice issue and yes, it’s a Jewish issue.
In Judaism abortion is not just allowed it is also mandated to preserve a pregnant person’s life and well-being.
We will fight for Abortion Rights with all of our strength.#RoeVWade pic.twitter.com/qvkxJE55dO
— Rabbi Rick Jacobs (@URJPresident) May 3, 2022
Jamie Manson, head of Catholics for Choice, a Catholic abortion rights advocacy group, said the news is not shocking. "We listened on December 1 to the arguments, and we know the makeup of this court," she told RNS.
"Any weakening or overturning of Roe v. Wade is a direct result of the overreach of the Catholic Church, led by a small group of old, mostly white, allegedly celibate men who will never, ever become pregnant..." - @jamielmanson
— Catholics for Choice (@Catholic4Choice) May 5, 2022
"We have five radically anti-choice Catholics on this court, so we weren't surprised," Manson added.