Attorney General Ellison fights Mississippi's attempt to overturn parts of Roe v. Wade at Supreme Court
Joins coalition of 24 AGs in amicus brief to Court, which will hear oral argument on December 1
September 21, 2021
September 20, 2021 (SAINT PAUL) — Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison today joined a coalition of 24 state attorneys general in urging the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold its precedents protecting a woman’s right to decide before viability whether to carry a pregnancy to term. In an amicus brief filed with the Court, the coalition argues that Mississippi’s pre-viability abortion ban is unconstitutional and should remain unconstitutional. In 1973, the Supreme Court ruled in Roe v. Wade that the Constitution does not permit states to prohibit a woman from deciding before viability whether to carry her pregnancy to term. That ruling was affirmed in Planned Parenthood v. Casey in 1992 and reaffirmed in the following decades. In today’s brief, the coalition argues that Mississippi’s ban is unconstitutional under settled law, and that the Court should continue to uphold this well-established precedent.
The Supreme Court announced today that it will hear oral argument in the case on December 1.
“I can’t say this often enough: a woman’s right to make choices about her reproductive healthcare is a fundamental human right. It’s essential to living with dignity and respect. I will continue to use the power of my office to push back any unconstitutional laws, like Mississippi’s, that rob women of living with dignity and respect,” Attorney General Ellison said.
In March 2018, the governor of Mississippi signed into law what was then the strictest abortion ban in the nation. The law prohibits abortion at 15 weeks, with few exceptions, even in cases of rape or incest. A federal district court judge struck down the law stating that Mississippi “chose to pass a law it knew was unconstitutional...to ask the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade." The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the district court’s ruling.
Mississippi’s attempt to undo decades of Supreme Court precedent comes amid years of attempts by other States to strip Americans of their right to decide what is best for their bodies and futures. This year alone, 10 states have enacted bans on pre-viability abortions. In total, 16 states have now enacted pre-viability abortion bans.
Attorney General Ellison is a long-standing defender of a women’s right to make her own reproductive healthcare choices. Just last week, he joined another amicus brief in federal district court of 23 attorney general against Texas’ unconstitutional law to restrict women’s access to abortion care.
In filing the brief, Attorney General Ellison joined California Attorney General Rob Bonta, who led the coalition, and the attorneys general of Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.
A copy of the brief is available on the website of California Attorney General Rob Bonta.