he abortion rights challenge known as Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, which comes before the Supreme Court for oral arguments Wednesday, is the latest battle in the four-decade war over legal abortion in the United States. Pro-life and pro-choice activists have engaged in pitched legal conflict ever since the Supreme Court issued thunderbolt decisions in the 1973 landmark cases Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, which together established the constitutional right to abortion.
Pro-choice advocates initially believed that these two Supreme Court decisions settled the main issues, but pro-life activists have steadily chipped away at legal abortion rights and access. Until the Hellerstedt case, pro-choice activists were caught in a vicious political cycle: Pro-life proponents would introduce legislation restricting abortion access, and reproductive health advocates would try to prevent its passage and its implementation—with limited success. In Hellerstedt, pro-choice advocates are hoping to change their political fortunes and show that abortion restrictions have legally gone too far.
Click here for the rest of the article.