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Frank Talk: Busting Myths About Dobbs & Federal Late-Term Abortion Limits
In this week’s episode of Frankly With Frank, strategists Frank Cannon and Bob Heckman discuss the genius of Sen. Lindsey Graham’s Protecting Pain-Capable Unborn Children from Late-Term Abortion Act and address some common misunderstandings about the bill.
In media coverage of the Dobbs case, we frequently see one big error: “The Supreme Court sent the abortion issue back to the states.”
As America grapples with going from theoretically protecting the unborn and their mothers to protecting them in reality, this phrase has taken on an “everyone knows that” status. The problem is, it’s not what the decision says at all.
Certainly, state lawmakers have regained freedom to act that they haven’t had in 50 years. That said, the core holding of the case reads (emphasis ours):
Held: 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.
Justice Kavanaugh’s concurring opinion gets even more specific:
The Constitution is neutral and leaves the issue for the people and their elected representatives to resolve through the democratic process in the States or Congress—like the numerous other difficult questions of American social and economic policy that the Constitution does not address.
This makes sense when we consider the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban, which was upheld by the Supreme Court in Gonzales v. Carhart in 2007.
In the Dobbs era, the people are empowered to speak through all their elected legislators – which of course includes Congress. Pass it on.
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