Topline

Members of the Supreme Court have agreed to overturn the 1973 Roe v. wade decision, which guaranteed abortion rights nationwide, according to an apparently leaked draft opinion obtained by Politico on Monday—potentially overturning decades of legal precedent as many states seek to restrict or cut off access to abortion.

Key Facts

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The draft opinion—which Politico says it obtained from an unnamed source along with authenticating documents—is signed by conservative Justice Samuel Alito and stamped with a message indicating it was distributed to other judges February 10, and is part of a case regarding a Mississippi law that bans abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

The opinion calls Roe “egregiously wrong” and says both Roe v. wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey—a 1992 case that altered Roe but held abortion rights—“must be overruled,” arguing the Constitution doesn’t guarantee a right to abortion access and individual states can decide on their own whether to permit the procedure.

The draft doesn’t note which justices signed onto the draft opinion, but an unnamed person familiar with the decision told Politico at least four other conservative judges sided with Alito’s argument: Justices Amy Coney Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh, Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas.

According to Politico, the court’s three liberal justices will draft at least one dissent, and Chief Justice John Roberts’ status is not clear.