Today’s announcement has me thinking about matters of constitutional law. One of the matters I find most pressing is a little case called Roe v. Wade. While I rarely speak up in the Bloggernacle regarding my personal politics– mostly because my personal politics are quite diluted and hazy– this is an issue that I feel unabashedly strong about. And yes, I do think there’s a strong religious component in this sentiment, although I have no intention of demanding the same views of my co-religionists.
Anyway, for those of us who pray for the demise of Roe v. Wade, let us spend a minute today fantasizing about just such an event, in order to get us through the creeping ambivalence sparked by the President’s latest appointment.
Here’s the question, posed to me by my dad a few days ago:
You are an associate justice on the U.S. Supreme Court. You have just heard an abortion case that turns on the authority of Roe v. Wade. When the Chief Justice takes the straw poll after oral arguments, five of the justices favor overturning Roe v. Wade. The Chief assigns you to write the opinion. How do you do it?
Deny the existence of any invisible right at all? Completely dismantle the entire concept of substantive due process or other un-enumerated rights? Just destroy the right to privacy? And Griswold along with it? Find some narrower grounds for overturning the decision? You have the chance to get rid of Roe v. Wade. All that remains is to figure out how.
Note: If you think you have a chance at actually being a Supreme Court justice in the future, and think you might actually write the opinion overturning Roe, I encourage you not to go on record here and thereby ruin your chances. Except for Harriet Miers– if you are Harriet Miers, please go ahead and respond here. Thanks!