AG Dana Nessel releases statement for 51st anniversary of Roe v. Wade decision

(CBS DETROIT) – On Jan. 22. 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court declared a nationwide constitutional right to abortion in its Roe v. Wade decision

This anniversary comes nearly two years after the Supreme Court overturned the Roe decision, leaving it up to the states to decide whether or not to ban abortions. 

When the Roe decision was overturned, it triggered Michigan’s 1931 abortion ban to go into effect. 

At the time, Nessel called for its repeal, and in March 2023, the Michigan Senate voted to repeal the 1931 ban. In April, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed legislation repealing the law banning abortions with no exceptions for rape or incest

In November 2023, Right to Life Michigan and GOP lawmakers filed a lawsuit to overturn Section 28 of Article 1 of the Michigan Constitution, which was added after Proposal 3 was passed. Nessel, Whitmer and Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson were named as defendants in the lawsuit. 

Nessel released the following statement for the 51st anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision: 

“When the United States Supreme Court issued its landmark decision in Roe v. Wade 51 years ago, the Court recognized the principles of equality and privacy for every American resident. Today’s anniversary comes at a pivotal time – it is the second year since Roe was overturned and these rights were remanded to the states to decide, and on the cusp of an election, which could change the scope of women’s health for years to come.

“It reminds us that we cannot rest on our laurels, trusting that the protections which rely solely on judicial precedent will remain constant over time; we must do more to ensure that our essential rights cannot be stolen on the whim of a single court’s opinion. But here in Michigan, we can also take today to celebrate our successes: the historic support in the petitioning and passage of Prop 3 and legislative advancements in repealing harmful laws which undermined the health, safety, and wellbeing of the people of our state.

“In 2022, when Roe was overturned, my department fought tirelessly to preserve bodily autonomy and personal freedom for all Michigan residents. We have continued that fight to stop efforts to strip away access to mifepristone and misoprostol, and we will continue that fight against any entity, at the local, state, or national level, who attempts to interfere with our ability to make our most private healthcare decisions. I vow to continue to do so for as long as I am in office.”

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