On Monday evening Politico released a draft copy of a Majority Opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson, a Supreme Court case challenging the Constitutional right to abortion care — a right which has been considered settled precedent since the landmark Roe decision in 1973. The leak signals an unsurprising but nonetheless traumatizing reality: there appears to be a SCOTUS majority ready to strip women of their bodily autonomy.
The opinion lays out a road map to the conservative legal movement which indicates other rights born from the right to privacy are next on the list: gay marriage, interracial marriage, and the right to birth control to name a few. These assaults will affect us all, but it is critical to acknowledge that, as so often occurs in the policy making of the Right, those first to suffer, and who will suffer the most harm, are women of color and indigenous women. Key to protecting those most vulnerable is continuing to fight, as they are forced to, despite the sometimes exhausting nature of these battles. We must be active allies.
Let me be clear — I will continue to fight to ensure women in Virginia will retain the right to bodily autonomy . You have a right to abortion care today, and you will tomorrow if you are within the Commonwealth. My Democratic colleagues and I will continue to fight to preserve and expand defenses of women’s reproductive healthcare and the rights of marginalized communities. In many states that right has never been more at risk.
Leaking a Supreme Court opinion is an unprecedented step, and it is not yet clear what this signals about the reported debate among the court’s more moderate members on this case. But the ramifications are clear - no matter the final vote in this case — states with anti-abortion laws on the books will feel unencumbered to further restrict abortion access, those seeking and providing abortion care will face expanded danger from far-right groups, and women’s safety and ability to make their own medical choices will be destabilized.
Political action must be taken to right this wrong and steady our democracy before every right to autonomy crumbles before the Court. But just as importantly, we must take mutual action to support those who will suffer the greatest harm from this opinion. I am asking you to consider joining me in contributing what you are able to the Virginia Abortion Care Network.
I stand with you, and am here to listen to your ideas, concerns, and stories.
It is my continued honor to represent the 30th District.
Adam P. Ebbin
Member, Senate of Virginia
The General Assembly adjourned Sine Die on Saturday, March 12th after 60 contentious but rewarding days with a number of legislative decisions and the conflicting House and Senate biennial budget proposals still unresolved. The central cause of this delay was the somewhat unearned but unabated inertia of the recent campaign cycle. Governor Youngkin, who won by a margin of only 63,000 votes, one of the narrowest in Virginia’s history, and a House majority that won their seats by a total of less than 500 votes in two districts, entered the session claiming a “mandate” from the voters on their agenda. While the Senate budget prioritizes investing our historic surplus in valuable services, infrastructure, and people while also providing tax relief, the House version is singularly focused on reducing ongoing revenue to these programs for short term tax reductions. This view has moved us away from compromise and towards the partisan disputes which so often lead to roadblocks.