This past Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court officially turned down a case concerning the determination of if unborn children are entitled to have constitutional rights in the wake of the landmark overturning of Roe v. Wade last summer.
Back in 2019, the Catholics for Life group and a pair of pregnant women challenged a recently set up law in Rhode Island that officially codified abortion rights. As reported by Reuters, the Rhode Island Supreme court issued a ruling that the plaintiffs lacked proper legal standing for the case.
“This Court should grant the writ to finally determine whether prenatal life, at any gestational age, enjoys constitutional protection – considering the full and comprehensive history and tradition of our Constitution and law supporting personhood for unborn human beings,” highlighted the petitioners.
The court officially declined with zero comments.
The legal team for the plaintiff has not responded to requests for comment.
Daniel McKee, the Rhode Island Democratic Governor, stated his satisfaction with the choice from the justices to Reuters.
“Governor McKee believes that we should be expanding access to reproductive healthcare for women,” expressed spokesperson Matt Sheaff via a statement, going further to state that the governor “is committed to using his veto pen to block any legislation that would take our state backwards.”
Back in the court’s June ruling, Justice Samuel Alito stated that in order to overturn abortion rights the court took no position on “if and when prenatal life is entitled to any of the rights enjoyed after birth.”
The lawyers for the plaintiff made the argument that the case “presents the opportunity for this court to meet that inevitable question head on,” making reference to if the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution grants an unborn fetus equal protection rights and due process. In the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, the highest court in the nation claimed that “the word ‘person,’ used in the Amendment does not include the unborn.”
Prenatal life, or fetal personhood, has kicked off an intense debate between pro-abortion advocates and those protecting the sanctity of life. While those who support abortion rights make the claim that personhood laws could affect in-vitro fertilization or issue murder charges to women, pro-life advocates argue that fertilized eggs, embryos, and fetuses should have the same rights as newborns.
In the wake of the court’s ruling, well over a dozen states have set in place close to total bans on abortion.