OP-ED: Know Their Foes — What’s Next In The Conservatives Crosshairs
by Stefan Jones, Washington County Democrats Communications Committee Volunteer
The appalling ruling against Roe vs. Wade is shocking, but should not be surprising. Anti-choice conservatives spent decades planning, organizing, fundraising, litigating, cultivating judicial nominees, making anti-choice a litmus test, pushing legislation, and running for office at all levels of government. They played the long game, and have been rewarded for their efforts.
Some Republicans have downplayed this seismic event by saying it simply returns the right to restrict abortion to the states, but does anyone really believe that? There is already talk from conservatives of a national ban on abortion should the GOP gain control of the House, Senate, and the White House in 2024. It is likely they will make a campaign issue out of it.
And they won’t stop there.
The judicial, legislative, fundraising, and ground-game apparatus that made abortion a political issue, and a tool to propel political victories, is still in place. What is next in the cross hairs of the conservative outrage machine? We can take some guesses:
* Obergefell v. Hodges: Protects the right of same-sex couples to marry. (Learn more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obergefell_v._Hodges)
* Griswold v. Connecticut: Protects the right for all to obtain contraceptives. (Learn more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Griswold_v._Connecticut)
* Lawrence v. Texas: Banned laws criminalizing “sodomy.” (Learn more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_v._Texas)
* Loving v. Virginia: Ruled that laws criminalizing interracial marriage were unconstitutional. (Learn more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loving_v._Virginia)
* Bostock v. Clayton County: Protects employees against discrimination because they are gay or transgender. (Learn more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bostock_v._Clayton_County)
It is time that Democrats stop playing defense. We must be proactive and draw a line in the sand.
From Twitter user Parker Molloy:
“. . . personally, if I were Democrats right now, I’d be pushing legislation to try to lock down some of these issues before the court does what it did with Roe. Codify Obergefell in law, codify Griswold and Lawrence and Loving and Bostock before the court takes a swing at those.”
This could be done *tomorrow* if the Democratic leadership wanted. Introduce bills, put them up for up before the mid-terms. Make Republicans go on record as not supporting protections that majorities of the American public support.
“Go big. Introduce an amendment to the constitution guaranteeing a right to privacy. Will it succeed? Probably not. But these are all big actions they can take that show they’re serious about fighting back against the court’s theocratic push.”
A constitutional right to privacy would not only protect “bedroom issues,” but be a basis to outlaw unwarranted surveillance, tracking by social media companies, and misuse of medical records.
There was speculation that many Republican electeds secretly dreaded the actual fall of Roe vs. Wade, because they knew that basic access to abortion care was supported by most Americans. They knew it could become a campaign issue. While everyone on the right is now in full celebration mode, we can still make their fears come true. We must not only make the fall of “Roe” be a liability, but we must take them to task.
We must tell our electeds that protecting personal behavior and choice is a priority, and that we expect action.
This excellent website allows you to look up the office phone numbers and email contact forms for elected officials across the country, at the national, state, and local level:
Get to it!
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