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AG Ford pushes back against Roe v. Wade challenge

Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford joined a coalition of 24 state attorneys general to urge the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold aspects of the landmark Roe v. Wade case.

Ford, along with 23 other attorneys general, argues in an amicus brief file with the Supreme Court that Mississippi’s pre-viability abortion ban, which essentially bans abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, is unconstitutional and should remain so.

“I am committed to defending the constitutional reproductive rights of our citizens against these ongoing attacks on health care,” said AG Ford. “There is a coordinated effort in recent years to overturn legal precedent that has stood since 1973, and we must hold firm in our commitment to protect the Constitution and the rights and bodily autonomy of our citizens. Let me be clear, any revocation of Roe v. Wade will not stop abortions, it will only stop safe abortions.”

The Supreme Court ruled in 1973 in Roe v. Wade that the Constitution doesn’t permit states to prohibit a woman from deciding before viability whether to carry her pregnancy to term. In 1992, that ruling was affirmed in Planned Parenthood v. Casey and reaffirmed in the following decades.

In the brief, the coalition argues that Mississippi’s bass is unconstitutional under settled law, and the Court should continue to uphold the precedent.

The Supreme Court has set a Dec. 1 date to hear the Mississippi case.

Mississippi law

In March 2018, the governor of Mississippi signed into law what was then the strictest abortion ban in the nation. The law prohibits abortion at 15 weeks, with few exceptions, even in cases of rape or incest.

The case headed to federal court where a district court judge struck down the law, stating that Mississippi “chose to pass a law it knew was unconstitutional … to ask the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade.” The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the district court’s ruling.

Mississippi’s attempt to undo decades of Supreme Court precedent comes amid years of attempts by other states to strip Americans of their right to decide what is best for their bodies and futures. This year alone, 10 states have enacted bans on pre-viability abortions. In total, 16 states have now enacted pre-viability abortion bans.

In filing the brief, AG Ford joins the attorneys general of California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and the District of Columbia.

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