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Date : May 17, 2022

Lawmakers, advocacy groups weigh in on apparent leak of draft opinion overturning Roe

Lawmakers and advocacy groups reacted Monday to the unprecedented leak of a draft Supreme Court opinion overturning Roe v. Wade, the landmark law protecting abortion rights, with many applauding the document and others denouncing it.

In the hours after Politico reported on the apparent draft, which has not been obtained or confirmed, abortion rights protesters were seen gathering outside the Supreme Court.

Groups like Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union slammed the apparent draft, with the abortion rights group’s CEO calling it “dangerous” — a sentiment echoed on Twitter by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.

In a joint statement, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said the “party of Lincoln and Eisenhower has now completely devolved into the party of Trump.”

“Every Republican Senator who supported Senator McConnell and voted for Trump Justices pretending that this day would never come will now have to explain themselves to the American people,” they said.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., said elected officials should codify the law through legislation immediately — or end the filibuster in the Senate if there aren’t enough votes to pass it.

Several Republican senators focused on who was behind releasing the document.

Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas called on the Justice Department and the Supreme Court to use “every investigative tool necessary” in the search for the leaker, while Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri said on Twitter that it was “an unprecedented breach of confidentiality, clearly meant to intimidate.”

In a separate tweet, he added: “I will say, if this is the court’s opinion, it’s a heck of an opinion. Voluminously researched, tightly argued, and morally powerful.”

Marjorie Dannenfelser, the president of the anti-abortion rights group Susan B. Anthony List, said the organization will “wholeheartedly applaud” the draft if it becomes the court’s final opinion.

The opinion, reportedly written by Justice Samuel Alito, indicates at least five justices side with Mississippi in a case challenging the 1973 law.

The Supreme Court declined to comment.