Republicans are usually all about saving money, but apparently North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple has no issue spending thousands of dollars of his citizens’ money as long as it’s to restrict women’s rights.
This week, the state passed three abortion bills, altogether forming the nation’s harshest climate for abortion. The most restrictive bill, freshly signed by the governor, bans abortion after a fetal heartbeat can be detected — as few as six weeks after conception. This cuts in half what was previously the country’s most restrictive law in Arkansas, which just in early March made abortion illegal after 12 weeks.
While you might read this and think, “Wait, the courts will have to stop that,” you aren’t alone — that’s exactly what North Dakota Republicans want. Dalrymple said one of the aims of the laws is to “discover the boundaries of Roe v. Wade,” and he instructed the legislature to set aside money for a legal fund so the state will be prepared to defend this ridiculous law, which will most certainly end up in front of the nation’s highest court.
“These bills represent an additional restriction beyond what the Supreme Court has already ruled, which was they feel abortions beyond 24 weeks gestation can be outlawed,” Dalrymple said in an interview Tuesday. “The question becomes, would they consider a further restriction or two? In the end, there’s only one source that can answer that question, and that’s our federal courts.”
While the landslide of laws restricting abortion in this country make it seem as though the public tide is turning against Roe v. Wade, that actually isn’t the case. A recent poll conducted on the anniversary of the famous Supreme Court case indicated that 70 percent of Americans do not want the case to be overturned.
There’s also no indication that an appeal to the current Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade would even be effective. Our current court is split down the middle in terms of ideology, and the original ruling was made with only two dissenting votes. And really, it’s not like we’ll see any more conservative justices any time soon, considering President Obama is in office through January 2017.
This direct contradiction to Roe v. Wade is not productive. It will immediately be challenged in court when it takes effect Aug. 1, and money will be wasted on legal fees while a completely unnecessary and arbitrary law is only temporarily in effect.