This week, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas made it clear that his colleagues would not be “bullied” into changing their opinions on any case.
Thomas, who was delivering remarks at the 11th Circuit Judicial Conference in Atlanta, made the statements against a backdrop of recently leaked early draft opinions that indicated the Supreme Court may be readying to overrule landmark abortion rulings Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.
“We are becoming dependent on obtaining certain outcomes, rather than accepting the ones we don’t like,” Thomas remarked in reference to the leak, which immediately generated outrage among Democratic elected officials and a slew of protests from pro-abortion organizations.
Thomas said, “We can’t be a institution that can be forced to provide you with the results you want. The events from last week are symptoms of this,” he added.
Protests have been held outside the Supreme Court and the homes of individual justices since the draft was revealed.
In addition, Democratic senators Elizabeth Warren (MA) and Amy Klobuchar (MN) — among others — have called for Roe v. Wade to be codified in law and for Congress to pass legislation providing a right to abortion. Whether or not such efforts are doomed to failure in a 50/50 Senate is debatable, as Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) has already stated that he would refuse to give up the filibuster in order to secure reproductive rights.
The Democrats’ bill, according to Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), is “too broad” and does not include exemptions for Catholic hospitals on religious grounds, and also said they would not support it.
Others, like Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA), have said that the leaked draft simply provides an opportunity for President Joe Biden to increase the court. “We must abolish the filibuster and codify Roe v. Wade immediately in order to ensure that constitutional rights to abortion are always protected,” he stated, adding, “Republicans made up their minds a long time ago: they would do whatever it takes to repeal Roe v. Wade. We must add seats on the Court in order to protect it.”
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