Pa.’s Toomey, eight GOP U.S. House lawmakers urge Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade

By: - January 5, 2020 6:30 am

Upping the stakes in the abortion wars in a year in which control of the White House and Congress is on the line,  nine Pennsylvania Republicans have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn two landmark cases that provide the legal bedrock for access to abortion nationwide.

U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., along with eight of Pennsylvania’s Republican U.S. House members, joined with 38 senators and 160 more House members, in an amicus brief calling on the high court to overturn Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. 

The brief was filed in a case known as June Medical Services v. Gee, which challenges a restrictive abortion law passed in Louisiana in 2014

Toomey was joined by GOP U.S. Reps. Dan Meuser, R-9th District; Scott Perry, R-10th District; Lloyd Smucker, R-11th District; John Joyce, R-13th District; Guy Reschenthaler, R-14th District; Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson, R-15th District, and Mike Kelly, R-16th District.  

Bucks County U.S. Rep. Brian Fitzpartrick, who’s facing a stiff re-election challenge, was the lone GOP holdout.

The brief was penned by Americans United for Life, an anti-abortion, anti-choice organization founded in 1971 that, according to the Washington Post, that has taken a slow-and-steady approach to blocking abortion access. In 2018, the AUL quietly authored 19 pieces of abortion-restricting state-level legislation. 

The AUL’s 12-person staff is based in Arlington, Va. where it serves as a resource for state Legislatures on anti-choice matters such as abortion access and contraception. 

AUL states on their website, “No matter how well-intentioned a law is, it won’t have the intended effect if it isn’t worded correctly; in fact, sometimes it can actually make matters worse. AUL attorneys are highly-regarded experts on pro-life legal language and the Constitution, consulting on bills and amendments across the country. In addition, our model legislation enables legislators to easily introduce bills without needing to research and write the bills themselves, helping ensure that their efforts will have the desired impact and withstand judicial scrutiny.”

Christine Castro, an attorney at Women’s Law Project’s western Pa. office said in a statement Friday that “Research repeatedly demonstrates that legal abortion in the United States under Roe is exceedingly safe. Beyond that, Pennsylvanians and Americans overwhelmingly support Roe v. Wade.”

“It is appalling so many lawmakers elected to represent the interests of Pennsylvanians in the U.S. Congress have chosen to advance policies that will harm constituents instead,” she said.

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Cassie Miller
Cassie Miller

A native Pennsylvanian, Cassie Miller worked for various publications across the Midstate before joining the team at the Pennsylvania Capital-Star. In her previous roles, she has covered everything from local sports to the financial services industry.