The Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade is a triumph for democracy

We’ve all heard the claim that reversing Roe v. calf would pose a fundamental threat to our democracy. That claim, and the voices that repeat it, will become louder, more vehement and more violent after the historic decision of the US Supreme Court Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

And that claim is completely false. Indeed, what has just happened is much more a triumph for democracy than for the cause of the abolition of life. It’s fair to say that the decision could be the most important victory for maintaining the democratic process the Supreme Court has ever achieved.


We’ve all heard the verdict roe summarized as follows: “The Supreme Court legalized abortion.” In fact, in the last month or so, The New York TimesNational Public Radio and many other major news sources used this phrase to describe the history of the court.

Such a formulation describes a legislative process. And as we should all know, Article I, Section 1 of the Constitution gives Congress all legislative powers at the federal level. Courts should not “legalize” anything. That is the job of the legislature.

Judge Samuel Alito’s thoroughly researched report makes this abundantly clear roe was an act of brute judicial power — which simply means that the Supreme Court made a landmark decision on abortion rather than properly applying the language and meaning of the Constitution.

before roeevery state has placed at least some restrictions on abortion. And there is absolutely no historical evidence that the text of the Constitution – particularly the 14th Amendment – should be construed to find a constitutional right to abortion.

Supreme Court Against Abortion
Anti-abortion activists celebrate near the US Supreme Court on the streets of Washington, DC on June 24, 2022.
Olivier Douliery/AFP/Getty Images

The Constitution is not meant to be malleable – it is meant to be reformed into any form preferred by a majority of unelected judges. If it is to be amended, such amendments should go through the legislative process in which written amendments are proposed and ratified.

Far too often we focus on whether we like the outcome of a decision, regardless of how it is achieved. With few exceptions, presidents, governors, bureaucrats, and judges are not vested with the authority to legislate for us. Legislation rests with Congress and the state legislatures. For example, even if we like a fiat imposed by a governor, we should be very concerned that such an act is indistinguishable from that of a dictator. In a democratic republic, laws must come from legislators.

The nearly 50 years of political turbulence unleashed by the decision in demonstrate why this is important roe. If the population does not like the laws of certain legislators, it is comparatively easy to “vote out the rascals” and achieve the desired change of course in politics. tip over roewas considered almost impossible.

in the Dobbs, the Supreme Court pointed out that there has never been a national consensus on abortion — just shifting and nuanced views that cover a wide spectrum. States have created a variety of laws on the subject in the past, although until roe not one opted for the total freedom of movement that the decision imposed nationally by court order. If we stick to the rules of democracy, the people can shape the law according to their ideas. That Dobbs Decision brings the issue of abortion back into the democratic process. Going forward, abortion laws in your state will reflect the views of the majority of voters in your state. That is the essence of democracy.

And we must not forget that our country was founded on the principle that the process of constitutional self-government was the greatest guarantee of freedom. Political power must remain in the hands of the people for freedom to flourish.

George Washington was trusted and loved by his own generation for many reasons, but the highest esteem accompanied his decision to voluntarily retire from power. After winning the war, he returned to farming instead of declaring himself ruler. And after serving two terms as president, he walked away again, maintaining the view that power is limited.

It is rare for a government agency to limit its own powers. But this is one of those rare moments that should be cherished by all who love freedom and democracy. The Supreme Court acknowledged that half a century ago it had improperly usurped the power of the people and their lawmakers. Now it has given up that power and given it back to the people. This is a miracle worth celebrating.

Michael P. Farris is President and CEO of Alliance Defending Freedom (@ADFLlegal), whose attorneys served on the Mississippi legal team and defended the state’s lying law before the US Supreme Court.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own. The Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade is a triumph for democracy

Rick Schindler

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