A U.S. Supreme Court draft opinion on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization was leaked Monday night, stating a majority opinion would strike down the federal abortion law set forth by Roe v. Wade in 1973.
Roe v. Wade was a decision of the U.S. Supreme Court that protects a pregnant woman’s freedom to choose to have an abortion without government restrictions.
More than 20 states have laws that could restrict abortions if Roe v. Wade is overturned.
North Dakota is one of 12 states, including South Dakota, with a trigger law that would ban abortions completely if the case was officially overturned.
North Dakota’s legislature has routinely supported anti-abortion measures.
Places like Dakota Hope in Minot offer services for pregnant women looking for resources.
“There are other options besides abortion and many women find that those options are very good for them on a long-term basis. I think that either way if it’s overturned or not, there is still going to be a need for help for women who find themselves in stressful circumstances where they feel they need to think about abortion,” said Nadia Smentana, director of Dakota Hope Clinic.
Although the leaked draft was in favor of overturning the case, a final decision has not been made.
In a statement, the Supreme Court confirmed the authenticity of the leaked document but noted that it does not represent a decision.
According to the draft, the majority vote would overturn the federal constitutional right to abortion, which some say would cause a transformation in women’s reproductive health in America.
This leaked draft sparked protests among abortion activists, and opinions on the case have been circulating nationwide.
“For me myself, and others, I’m pro-choice,” said Skylar Arnold, a Minot State University student.
“I think that we should be doing more to kind of help women so that they don’t have to have abortions. And I think that a lot of this legislation is trying to go in the right direction with that,” said Madison Lalonde, a Minot State University student.
“Sometimes you are not ready for a baby and you might not be financially ready, even if you are married. So, I think it shouldn’t be banned,” said Kili Rizal, a Minot State University student.
According to a statement from the Supreme Court obtained by KX News, draft opinions are a routine and essential part of the court’s confidential deliberative work.
Gov. Doug Burgum also commented on the prospect of the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade in a statement:
While recognizing that the U.S. Supreme Court has yet to issue an official opinion, our administration has consistently supported pro-life legislation, and we welcome the prospect of this issue being returned to the states where it belongs.