Unrestricted Abortion Throughout all Nine Months of Pregnancy Remains Legal in Vermont, Despite Today’s Supreme Court Ruling, Vermont Right to Life says
by Guy Page
The U.S. Supreme Court today overturned Roe V. Wade, the landmark decision that made abortion legal everywhere in the United States. The decision returns jurisdiction to elected representatives. It will not affect the legality of abortion in Vermont, Vermont Right to Life said today.
In a 6-3 decision delivered this morning on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the court ruled that “the Constitution does not confer a right to abortion; Roe v. Wade, 410 U. S. 113, and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pa. v. Casey, 505 U. S. 833, are overruled; the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives,” according to a statement on the SCOTUS website.
The case under consideration, Thomas E. Dobbs, State Health Officer of the Mississippi Department of Health v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, involved a Mississippi law banning all abortions over 15 weeks gestational age except in medical emergencies and in the case of severe fetal abnormality.
Constitutional experts on both sides of the debate over abortion have long criticized the Roe decision as having created a right that did not exist and for broadly over reaching their jurisdiction. Those errors have been corrected today.
The overturning of Roe v. Wade has no effect on abortion in Vermont. In Vermont, abortion has been legal since the 1972 Vermont Supreme Court case in Beecham v. Leahy. In 2019, Act 47 created a statute that further protects unlimited, unregulated abortion through all nine months of pregnancy irrespective of the US Supreme Court decision in Dobbs.
“Extremist proponents of abortion rights in Vermont will use the Supreme Court decision to attempt to rally support for passage of Proposal 5/Article 22, stated Mary Hahn Beerworth, Executive Director of Vermont Right to Life. “Proponents must not be allowed to mislead Vermonters into believing that ‘Article 22 is needed,’ or that the amendment simply ‘codifies Roe v. Wade,’ when in fact the amendment far exceeds the holding in Roe.”
Vermont Right to Life urged all journalists in Vermont covering today’s decision to responsibly include in their reports the fact that nothing about today’s US Supreme Court decision changes the legality of abortion in our state. Passage of H. 57, now Act 47, is clear statutory protection of unlimited and unregulated abortion throughout all nine months of pregnancy.
Planned Parenthood of Northern New England tweeted this statement: “The Supreme Court just overturned Roe v. Wade, ending our constitutional right to abortion. We know you may be feeling a lot of things right now — hurt, anger, confusion. Whatever you feel is OK. We’re here with you — and we’ll never stop fighting for you.”
The Vermont Democratic Party tweeted: “Vermonters must act swiftly and in large numbers to counteract the great harm wreaked by the Supreme Court’s decision. We must stand up for the rights of all people.”
This news report includes content from a Vermont Right to Life press statement.