This Is What Happens the Minute Roe Is Overturned

Thanks to so-called “trigger laws,” abortion bans will spring into effect.

Jeff Malet/Newscom via ZUMA Press

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Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement today. The New Yorker’s Jeffrey Toobin put it bluntly:

Sounds outlandish, right? Well, less outlandish than you might think.

Last year my colleague Hannah Levintova wrote about the states with abortion bans ready to spring into effect the moment Roe v. Wade is overturned.

They are often referred to as “trigger laws,” because even though each state’s provision works a bit differently, the measures are “triggered” by the reversal of Roe v. Wade. Should that occur, these states commit to making abortion illegal in all cases, except to protect a mother’s life, just as it was before the Supreme Court’s 1973 ruling. (In four states, the trigger law makes the switch back to illegal abortion automatic.)

“There will be an immediate harm to women,” one expert says in the piece. So read the whole thing

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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