Iowa evangelical kingmaker: We have a chance to take down Roe v. Wade!

‘We have a chance to take down Roe v. Wade!’ Iowa evangelical kingmaker predicts Trump’s next Supreme Court pick will ‘revert’ federal law to ban gay marriage and abortion

  • Conservatives see Kennedy’s retirement as a chance to change landmark social cases like Roe vs. Wade 
  • Bob Vander Plaats: ‘We have a chance to take down Roe v. Wade. This is a historic moment in the pro-life community today’
  • CNN legal analyst Jeffery Toobin: ‘You’re going to see 20 states pass laws banning abortion outright’
  • Kennedy was a swing-vote on the court who often sided with abortion rights 

Conservative groups are seizing on the retirement of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy as an opportunity to reverse some landmark social cases – over throwing Roe vs. Wade and overturn the legalization of gay marriage.

Bob Vander Plaats, the president and CEO of conservative group The Family Leader, said Kennedy’s departure gives them a chance to over rule the controversial case that legalized abortion. 

‘We have a chance to take down Roe v. Wade. This is a historic moment in the pro-life community today,’ Vander Plaats said on Fox News Wednesday. 

Bob Vander Plaats, a leading Iowa conservative, said the retirement is a chance to overturn Roe vs. Wade

President Trump, pictured with Justice Kennedy, has a list of 25 names he will choose from for a new Supreme Court justice

Vander Plaats is a conservative kingmaker in the Iowa, whose blessing GOP presidential candidates come bow for during the state’s caucuses.

He also saw Kennedy’s stepping down as a chance to end gay marriage.

‘I think God’s design is for marriage and family. We will revert back to that,’ he said. ‘Marriage needs to be debated again.’

Kennedy’s retirement will push the Supreme Court’s bench to the right as a conservative judge will likely replace him based on President Donald Trump’s already-published list of legal minds from which he will make another appointment. 

And it wasn’t just conservatives who saw an opportunity for change. 

CNN legal analyst Jeffery Toobin predicted that ‘you’re going to see 20 states pass laws banning abortion outright, because they know there are going to be five votes on the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. And abortion will be illegal in a significant part of the United States in 18 months, and there is no doubt about that.’

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Other anti abortion-rights groups echoed that message. 

‘Justice Kennedy’s retirement from the Supreme Court marks a pivotal moment for the fight to ensure every unborn child is welcomed and protected under the law,’ said Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser to The Hill newspaper.

Trump has previously vowed to nominate ‘pro-life’ justices to overturn Roe V. Wade.

The groups have been happy with Trump’s first nominee, Justice Neil Gorsuch, who just this week sided with anti-abortion ‘crisis pregnancy centers’ in a free speech case.

Kennedy, meanwhile, was a swing-vote on the court who often sided with abortion rights. 

‘Today, Justice Kennedy announced his retirement, and because President Trump will nominate the next Supreme Court Justice, a woman’s constitutional right to access legal abortion is in dire, immediate danger — along with the fundamental rights of all Americans,’ said Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America.

‘We also know that for decades, a multi-million-dollar, extreme, anti-choice movement has quietly and aggressively chipped away at that right in state legislatures, in lower courts, and now from within the Trump administration. Their stated goal, clearly and loudly, is overturning Roe v. Wade.’

The Trump presidency has spurred a wave of abortion laws, with 19 states adopting 63 restrictions in 2017, the highest number since 2013, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

Anti-abortion groups and Republican state governments hope one of these laws will land before the Supreme Court, triggering a challenge to Roe V. Wade.

‘With this vacancy, Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell hold the balance of the court in their hands — and with it, the legal right to access abortion in this country,’ said Dawn Laguens, executive vice president of Planned Parenthood, to The Hill.

‘The significance of today’s news cannot be overstated: The right to access abortion in this country is on the line.’

Emily’s List, a PAC which works to elect ‘pro-choice’ lawmakers, called the ramifications of Kennedy’s retirement ‘enormous and terrifying.’

‘Republicans will use this opportunity to nominate and confirm yet another anti-choice justice to the Supreme Court — a single individual with the power to repeal Roe v. Wade,’ said Emily’s List president Stephanie Schriock.

Trump has vowed to appoint judges who support overturning Roe vs. Wade

Kennedy was a swing-vote on the court who often sided with abortion rights

‘We will not stop fighting to elect pro-choice Democratic women to the Senate who will defend women’s access to safe, legal abortion and other forms of critical reproductive health care and fight for the rights of all Americans. The stakes could not be higher.’ 

Trump, earlier in his presidency, published a name of 25 people he’d consider for the court. He confirmed Wednesday he will pick a name from that list.

It is too early to say who might be the White House’s front-runner.

With the midterm elections just around the corner, the Trump administration has a limited amount of time to vet a replacement and get him or her approved the slow-paced U.S. Senate.

Having already canceled lawmakers’ summer break to consider the president’s other lingering nominations, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell improved Trump’s odds. McConnell pledged Wednesday to get the job done by this fall.

The Senate has the sole authority to approve the president’s nominations. Republicans lowered the threshold for court appointments last year in order to push through Gorsuch.

The GOP is anticipated to expand its 51-seat majority in the U.S. Senate in November. Waiting until after the election to appoint a justice could, however, prove disastrous if any of the seats the GOP currently holds fall into the other party’s palm.    

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said Wednesday that Democrats would fight any attempt to confirm a nominee ‘who will put health insurance companies over patients, or put the federal government between a woman and her doctor.’

He made special reference to the risk of overturning the abortion case ‘Roe v. Wade.’

Schumer objected to the list of 25 potential high court nominees.

‘Americans should make it clear that they will not tolerate a nominee chosen from President Trump’s pre-ordained list, selected by powerful special interests who would reverse the progress we’ve made over the decades,’ he stated.

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