Bench Memos

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Senate Hearing on Roe


Having made its ugly entrance on the American scene 32 years ago, Roe v. Wade continues to roil American politics, especially the selection and confirmation of Supreme Court justices.

I testified last Thursday before the Constitution subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee in a hearing titled “The Consequences of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton“. Kudos to Chairman Sam Brownback of Kansas for holding the hearing (which featured pro-life witnesses Norma McCorvey and Sandra Cano, the actual, but unwilling, pseudonymous plaintiffs Roe and Doe).

Among other things, I observed that Roe is a “frightening” and “lousy opinion,” “a verbal smokescreen” that “borders on the indefensible” and “provides essentially no reasoning in support of its holding.” But those weren’t my words. They’re the words of liberal scholars and thinkers who strongly support abortion.

My modest bottom-line point was that all Americans, no matter what their policy views on abortion, ought to recognize that the regime imposed by the Supreme Court in Roe should be dismantled and that the issue of abortion should be returned to its rightful place in the democratic political process.

It was discouraging, but not surprising, to see how pro-Roe advocates continue to engage in lies and distortions.

The full written testimony that I submitted is available here.


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