Student Opinion: Will the New Supreme Court Nominee End Reproductive Rights for Women?

Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

By Liam Benedict

Following the death of Ruth Bader Ginsberg, the vacant spot on the Supreme Court has become a hotly contested issue. Donald Trump is trying to rapidly fill the spot since his career as President could be over soon. 

In just a few days after RBG’s passing, Trump has already selected a new nominee: Amy Coney Barrett. He has already initiated the process of getting her onto the Supreme Court. 

However, the rush appointing of this S.C. candidate is not only painfully hypocritical but could also have dangerous political consequences for every woman’s reproductive rights in America

In every respect, Barrett is a perfect candidate for Trump. She is conservative, educated, heavily religious and of course, female. 

Replacing a female judge on the Supreme Court with another woman is a smart political move. But it takes more than gender to become an S.C. judge. 

Both Trump and Barrett say that the appointment has no ulterior motive and have moved forward with her designation because they believe she is the best alternative in replacing RBG.

CNN reported that Trump “argued that he had a constitutional duty to fill her seat.” But there are several hypocritical issues hidden behind this idea.

Following S.C. Judge Antonin Scalia’s death, Republicans in the Senate furiously blocked any S.C. judge Obama tried to pass. They claimed that that duty should fall on the next President, despite there being many months left in Obama’s previous term. 

However, now that Trump is president, the reversal is clear as these same Republican senators rush in a new judge with barely two months left in Trump’s current term.

The hypocrisy is infuriating and quite frankly, shameful. But it is clear that the president and his supporters in Congress believe their actions to be for the best. This is an obvious rush job. 

While both RBG and Barrett have solid academic backgrounds, RBG was a federal judge for over 13 years before her nomination, while Barrett has only three years of judging experience. 

Unfortunately, the hasty nature of her appointment is not the most dangerous aspect of her nomination. Barrett is an openly devout Catholic and has faced doubts from both the public and from California Senator Dianne Feinstein, on whether or not she could avoid having her rulings biased by her religion. 

The S.C. nominee has denied these allegations. However, whether this is true remains to be seen, but the early evidence does not look promising. 

In my opinion, if Amy Barrett gets put on the Supreme Court, we will see harsh restrictions put on women’s access to abortions. Although this is slightly better than having women’s access taken away entirely, this would still greatly harm the reproductive rights of every woman. 

Given how quintessential Roe v Wade is, completely repealing it would be a fairly difficult legal challenge and would face enormous public backlash. After all, CNN announced that “According to Pew Research Center, 59% of Christians do not want the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v Wade.” Rather ironic, considering how both Trump and Barrett have talked about the Supreme Court serving the will of the people. 

However, if the S.C. simply places restrictions on abortion, it will be easier for the public to swallow, while also having the potential to drastically restrict women’s access to a procedure that has been viewed as a right for decades. 

There are several reasons to believe that this will be the case. Barrett has expressed her disapproval of a woman’s right to choose to get an abortion in the past, and she has the voting record to prove it. “In 2018, she joined a dissent with fellow conservatives in an Indiana abortion dispute and referred to a provision that made it unlawful for physicians to perform an abortion because of the race, sex or disability of the fetus,” reports CNN. 

President Donald Trump has also affirmed Barrett’s position on the issue of abortion. In a 2016 debate, President Trump said that he planned on appointing judges that would repeal Roe v Wade. “That will happen automatically, in my opinion, because I am putting pro-life justices on the court,” NPR detailed. 

In the same NPR article, Barrett describes that she does not think that “the core case – Roe’s core holding that, you know, women have a right to an abortion – I don’t think that would change. But I think the question of whether people can get very late-term abortions, how many restrictions can be put on clinics – I think that would change.”

All this supports my conclusion, but for the moment though, this is all just speculation depending on if Barrett becomes an S.C. judge, but the outcome looks grim. It seems like this will just be one of the many things that we will have to watch this year with bated breath. 

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  1. Eric Gelber

    There’s little doubt where Barrett stands on the issue of abortion rights. In 2006, for example, she signed onto a statement saying, in part, “It’s time to put an end to the barbaric legacy of Roe v. Wade and restore laws that protect the lives of unborn children.” She’s committed to end abortion rights, not merely restrict them. Notably, this document was omitted from the reams of materials she turned over to the Senate for her confirmation, which says something about her forthrightness on the issue.

  2. Tia Will

    I am deeply concerned about the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett. Not just because of her well known anti-abortion position but because of what is not well known about her views. In 2006, she joined with an extremist, life begins at fertilization group in an ad espousing their views.

    “In 2006, while Barrett worked as a law professor at Notre Dame, she was one of hundreds of people who signed a full-page newspaper advertisement sponsored by St Joseph County Right to Life, an extreme anti-choice group located in the city of South Bend, which is in the region know as Michiana.” 

    The add advocates prohibition of IVF clinics due to the discarding of unused fertilized eggs. It is hard for me to believe that a candidate for SC who holds such views so strongly that they engage in advocacy, would be able to view these issues through a truly objective lens.

    In Amy Coney Barrett, we seem to have a candidate who would favor not only a decision to restrict abortions but also a candidate who might choose to favor laws the effect of which is dictating who cannot have children at all. I believe a government that can tell people they must have children, is one that someday might tell people they cannot have children. This is not without precedence. Both Germany and China have had such policies in recent history.

    My belief is that both IVF and abortion are medical procedures. As such they should both fall under the principle of medical autonomy. This means they are decisions between a woman, her partner (in cases of non-coercive sex, and her doctor.  The government should have absolutely no say in legal medical procedures.

    1. Keith Olsen

       I believe a government that can tell people they must have children,

      First off I don’t think they look at it as a case of the gov’t telling people they must have children, it’s telling them that they can’t kill children.

       is one that someday might tell people they cannot have children. 

      That would be the same as a Democrat run gov’t which pushes abortion might someday just tell people they cannot have children.

      I say this as a conservative who accepts abortion as long as it’s not late term.

  3. Chris Griffith

    Tia Tia Tia,

    You have this all wrong democrats should be for the right to life not against it. How are Democrats going to propagate?? It seems that most Democrats self-identify as some other sex  what they were born with and the ones that are left self-identify as some other species and then you have all of the male liberals that are born without balls. Liberal Democrats have to change their whole mindset,.😁

  4. John Hobbs

    The one upside of the Putinsky president catching Covid19 is that he infected enough GOP senators to screw up premature confirmation.

    “The Democrat government that pushes abortion..”

    Tell me where to find the ‘Get an abortion PSAs.’

    You don’t have to look hard for the “Abortion is Murder.” crap.

    I’d tell you to stop the lying but it would be wasted on you.

    “I say this as a conservative who accepts abortion as long as it’s not late term”

    Unless of course the fetus is non-white in which case he accepts it into 148th trimester.


  5. Keith Olsen

    Unless of course the fetus is non-white in which case he accepts it into 148th trimester.

    About 65% of all abortions are non white with blacks being 38% of the total.

    So if anything it’s Democrat policies which are leading to more black and minority babies being aborted.

    Don’t blame conservatives.


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