On May 2, 2022, the website Poltico posted a story attributed to Josh Gerstein and Alexander Ward sharing a leaked first draft of the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) majority opinion on Dobbs vs Jackson Women’s Health Organization addressing the constitutionality of a Mississippi law restricting abortion after the 15th week of pregnancy. The majority opinion draft, authored by Associate Justice Samuel Alito, overturned Roe v Wade (1973) and Planned Parenthood v Casey (1992), releasing the stranglehold the judicial branch has held over abortion and sending the issues to the individual states to settle the abortion laws within their borders through local democratic efforts and elections. Chief Justice John Roberts almost immediately verified the document’s authenticity announcing the breach in secrecy which generally surround the deliberations of the Supreme Court would be met by an internal investigation. The draft and the decision were real. The outcry from both sides of the issue was immediate and intense. Most of the loudest objections to the draft center on emotional appeals and anecdotal testimonies about women who need abortions and will be forced to compromise their safety and freedom to carry an unwanted child to term. The idea that Roe v Wade will be overturned produced a wave of fear, anger, and anti-religious vitriol. How could 50 years of legal precedent defending Roe suddenly be swept aside?

This Postmodern Realities episode is a conversion with JOURNAL author Jay Watts about the leaked SCOTUS opinion in Dobbs vs Jackson Women’s Health Organization and about his online-exclusive article, “The Leaked Draft: Is this the Fall of Roe v. Wade?”

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