Gov. Whitmer, state officials react to overturning of Roe V. Wade

Justice Samuel Alito issued the majority opinion, joined by Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett.
Published: Jun. 24, 2022 at 4:42 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WNEM) - The United States Supreme Court overturned Roe V. Wade, the Constitutional right to have an abortion, on Friday.

Justice Samuel Alito issued the majority opinion, joined by Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett.

Chief Justice John Roberts issued a concurring opinion, and the court’s three liberal justice dissented.

“Today, women still have access to reproductive health care and abortion,” said Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

The decision by the court’s conservative majority overturning the Roe v. Wade ruling is expected to lead to a wave of abortion bans in roughly half of the states.

In Michigan, the right to an abortion is still in place.

“With this decision coming out today, but our state supreme court acts urgently to clarify for Michiganders, Michigan women, Michigan health care providers, what the state of our law is so that we can continue to live our lives knowing that we retain our reproductive health rights. We’ve had for 49 years,” Whitmer said.

In April, Planned Parenthood of Michigan filed a lawsuit seeking to block enforcement of a 1931 law that outlaws abortion in the state.

In May, the state court of claims granted a preliminary injunction blocking the law from taking effect in the absence of Roe V. Wade.

“Michigan has a law that protects innocent human life and I believe that law should be upheld. I hope our attorney general will take her role as enforcing the law seriously and and honor the office to which she’s been elected,” said Congressman John Mooleanaar.

The injunction could be overturned by a high court which would then make getting or performing an abortion a felony with a prison sentence of up to four years.

Attorney General Dana Nessel and seven county prosecutors have all said they would not prosecute for this law.

“I have limited resources to prosecute violent crimes in Genesee County, and I’m not going to use those limited resources to criminalize what I consider to be a reproductive medical decision,” said Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton.

The fate of women’s rights to abortion is still up in the air.

If the state supreme court strikes down the 1931 law, the Michigan legislature could pass a new law prohibiting abortions.