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Senate Democrats next Wednesday will for a vote on a bill to codify the abortion protections in Roe v. Wade, after a draft Supreme Court opinion leaked this week indicating the court plans to overturn the precedent.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., announced the planned vote, which will be a procedural vote rather than final passage of the bill, in a Thursday press conference.
The vote almost certainly will fail because Republicans are expected to filibuster it. But Democrats are expected to make hay of that fact ahead of the midterm elections, seizing on an issue where they believe the public is on their side.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of N.Y., speaks to the media after a Democratic policy luncheon, Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
“Republican politicians across the country are passing laws telling the women of America, your body, our choice. So much for the party of limited government,” Schumer said.
“And now with the Republican court on the verge of tearing down five decades of precedent, Republicans suddenly don’t want to talk about their complicity in this effort,” he continued. “You asked them about do they support repealing Roe v. Wade? They change the subject.”
A Politico report earlier this week reveled a draft opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito which would overturn the precedent Roe v. Wade entirely. Roe was the 1973 Supreme Court case which ruled there is a Constitutional right to abortion, anchored in the right to privacy.
Conservatives have long railed against the decision as poor judicial practice while Democrats tout it as a key protection for women’s rights.
If the court indeed votes to overturn Roe, which it would do in late June or early July before its term ends, the decision on whether to allow legal abortion would return to individual states, unless Congress succeeds in passing nationwide legislation.
With the Senate almost certainly unable to pass any abortion bill with its current 50-50 makeup, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., said abortion will be a major issue for Democrats in the midterms.
“This fight is going to be now. It will be in weeks to come when these measures are voted on the Senate floor,” Blumenthal said. “Every senator will be held accountable. Reproductive rights will be on the ballot this November.”
Fox News’ Kelly Phares contributed to this report.