The Supreme Court on Friday ended constitutional protections for abortion that had stood in the United States for nearly a half-century.
The decision by the court’s conservative majority overturned the landmark Roe v Wade ruling and is expected to lead to abortion bans in roughly half the 50 states.
The ruling, unthinkable just a few years ago, was the culmination of decades of efforts by abortion opponents, made possible by an emboldened right side of the court that has been fortified by three appointees of former President Donald Trump.
“[We] hold that the Constitution does not confer a right to abortion. Roe and Casey must be overruled, and the authority to regulate abortion must be returned to the people and their elected representatives,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote.
Both sides predicted the fight over abortion would continue, in state capitals and in Washington, and Justice Clarence Thomas, part of Friday’s majority, called on the court to overturn other high court rulings protecting same-sex marriage, gay sex, and the use of contraceptives.