May 22, 2024
Vice President Kamala Harris called out Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas on Friday for his portion of the Supreme Court ruling that reversed Roe v. Wade.

Vice President Kamala Harris called out Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas on Friday for his portion of the Supreme Court ruling that reversed Roe v. Wade.

During a political event in Chicago for Gov. J. B. Pritzker, Harris claimed that same-sex marriage and contraception were Republicans’ next target if they won back the House or Senate in the midterms.

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“Justice Clarence Thomas said the quiet part out loud,” Harris said. “In the Dobbs decision, his piece of it was to say, basically, marriage equality is on the line, contraception is on the line. So see what is happening and what is at play here. See it clearly. We’ve got to hold on to our numbers in the House and the Senate, because without Democratic majorities in Congress, the writing on the wall seems to be pretty clear about what other rights they’ll also come after.”

The Supreme Court overturned the landmark abortion case in a 6-3 ruling this summer, which sent the issue back to the states. All six justices nominated by a Republican president voted in favor of overturning. The majority opinion was penned primarily by Justice Samuel Alito.

“The Constitution does not confer a right to abortion; Roe and Casey are overruled; and the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives,” a syllabus of the opinion said.

The three dissenting justices were nominated and confirmed under Democratic presidents.

A portion of the opinion credited to Thomas, claims the Court should reconsider other due process precedents in future cases, including in other landmark cases such as Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell.

Obergefell v. Hodges in 2015 guaranteed same-sex couples the right to marry, and established it was protected by both the Due Process Clause and the Equal Protection Clause. Lawrence v. Texas was passed by the Supreme Court in 2003, and overturned a Texas law that criminalized sex between people of the same gender. Griswold v. Connecticut in 1965 which allowed married couples to purchase and use contraceptives without government interference.

Harris told the Chicago audience Friday that if Democrats hold the majority in the Senate, and win two additional seats in the midterms, then Congress can codify Roe v. Wade.

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“So our job is clear. And President Biden has been clear,” Harris said. “He said he’s not going to allow archaic Senate rules to stand in the way of protecting these two freedoms. So that’s the job before us.”

Thirty-five seats are open in the Senate during November’s midterms, with 14 Democratic seats open and 21 Republican seats.

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