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Local opponents, supporters of abortion react to Roe v. Wade draft leak

Posted at 6:20 PM, May 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-03 23:35:30-04

SALT LAKE CITY — In an unprecedented leak, a draft opinion suggests the U.S. Supreme Court could overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade case that legalized abortion nationwide.

Mary Taylor of Pro-Life Utah and Karrie Galloway with Planned Parenthood Associates of Utah have polar opposite stances on abortion, but they were equally stunned to learn that the landmark case could be overturned.

“I have to take a step back and realize that the Supreme Court decision has not been handed down,” said Taylor.

“I have to say I was devastated when I heard the news, but taking a deep breath and focusing on the word 'draft' allowed me to move on,” said Galloway.

It's still unclear if the draft represents the court’s final word on the matter.

“We’ve never had a leak of a draft before, especially on a case this emotionally charged,” said Galloway.

“Doesn’t appear to be a reason that’s not nefarious for leaking this at this time, so it is a concern, not only for this case, but for the Supreme Court in general, for our country,” said Taylor.

READ: Utah lawmakers, political figures react to leaked Supreme Court draft on abortion rights

A decision to overrule Roe would lead to abortion bans in roughly half the states and could further impact this year's elections.

“If they go through with this draft, it’s going to change everything,” said Galloway.

“This decision won’t stop abortion in our country, but it will put this decision back in the hands of the people, and that’s where it always should have been. It should have never been decided by men in white robes,” said Taylor.

If the Supreme Court does decide to overturn Roe v. Wade, a trigger law in Utah would go into effect.

SB 174, which was passed in 2020, would make it a second-degree felony to perform an abortion in Utah — with a few exceptions such as rape or incest, the life of the mother, or if two doctors agree the fetus has a lethal defect.

“A 49-year precedent that most of the people that this law will affect, child-bearing age people, have never lived in a country without Roe,” said Galloway.

The court is expected to rule on the case before its term ends in late June or early July.