Proponents of abortion rights will hold rallies around the country on Saturday, beginning off what organisers predict will be a ‘summer of rage’ if the Supreme Court overturns the Roe v. Wade decision, which legalised abortion worldwide.
More than 300 ‘Bans Off Our Bodies’ marches have been organised by Planned Parenthood, the Women’s March, and other abortion rights organisations on Saturday, with the greatest crowds predicted in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and Chicago.
The protests follow the May 2 leak of a draught judgement showing the court’s conservative majority poised to overturn the 1973 landmark decision that established a federal constitutional right to abortion.
The court’s ultimate decision, which could provide states the authority to prohibit abortion, is likely in June. Following a Roe v. Wade decision, over half of the states in the United States might ban or severely restrict abortion.
Organizers expect hundreds of thousands of people to attend Saturday’s events, which they expect to be the first of many coordinated protests in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s ruling.
‘Our will be a summer of wrath for the women of this country,’ said Rachel Carmona, president of the Women’s March. ‘Until this government starts working for us, until the attacks on our bodies stop, until the right to an abortion is codified into law, we shall be ungoverned.’
Democrats, who currently control the White House and both chambers of Congress, are hoping that public outrage at the Supreme Court ruling will help their candidates win in November’s midterm elections.
However, voters will balance abortion rights against other factors such as rising food and gas prices, and they may be suspicious of Democrats’ capacity to defend abortion rights after efforts to entrench abortion rights in federal law failed.
Activists in New York City plan to march across the Brooklyn Bridge on Saturday, while demonstrators in Washington will gather at the Washington Monument before marching to the Supreme Court. Protesters in Los Angeles planned to congregate at City Hall, while those in Austin planned to meet at the state house.
According to the leaked opinion, demonstrators have assembled outside the houses of Supreme Court Justices Samuel Alito and Brett Kavanaugh, who voted to overturn Roe v. Wade.
Students for Life of America, an anti-abortion advocacy group with chapters across the country, announced Saturday that it would organise counter marches in nine cities across the country, including Washington.