ROANOKE, Va. – People across the country are weighing in on the future of abortion rights.
This comes after a Supreme Court draft opinion was leaked Monday night, revealing the potential for Roe v. Wade to be overturned.
About a dozen people took to the federal courthouse steps in downtown Roanoke to show their support for a woman’s right to choose.
They say this draft ruling is a direct attack on women’s reproductive rights.
“I think what you are seeing here is the amount of rage, anger and fear that has come because of the surprise leak last night of the Alito draft decision,” said protest organizer, Ivonne Wallace Fuentes.
The draft opinion leaked Monday night shows five justices siding against the 1973 decision that gave abortion rights federal protection.
If this opinion is finalized, abortion rights could fall into the hands of elected officials.
“I think I’ve been clear. I’m pro-life. And I made that very clear from the moment I announced my canvassing,” said Governor Glenn Youngkin when asked about the court’s draft opinion.
Right now in Virginia, abortions are legal in the first and second trimesters. They are also legal during the third trimester only if continuing the pregnancy is likely to result in the death of the woman or impair the woman’s mental or physical health.
“We want fewer abortions in Virginia, not more. We in fact, don’t believe that you should be able to get an abortion up through and including birth,” said Governor Youngkin.
According to the Virginia Department of Health, more than 15,000 abortions were performed on Virginians in 2020, which is down compared to data from 2015 reporting 17,000 abortions.
Supporters of abortion rights are concerned if Roe v. Wade is overturned, other cases could be next.
“It attacks the right to privacy. Which means it might not be reproductive freedom on the line. It could very well be marriage equality, access to contraceptives. This would be the first time the supreme court takes away a constitutional right and I don’t think Americans fully prepared to understand what kind of future that might mean,” said Wallace Fuentes.
The Supreme Court’s draft opinion could change between now and when it is set to be finalized in late June or early July.