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Your Weekend Reading: The Supreme Court Reshapes America

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Donald Trump appointed three associate justices during his term in office: Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett. The three conservative jurists were central to rolling back the 50-year-old right to abortion while delivering a landmark victory to gun manufacturers.

Donald Trump appointed three associate justices during his term in office: Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett. The three conservative jurists were central to rolling back the 50-year-old right to abortion while delivering a landmark victory to gun manufacturers.

Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Just hours after the US Supreme Court eliminated the constitutional right to abortion, Republican-controlled states including Texas and Missouri moved to severely limit or ban the procedure while some two dozen other states are expected to do so. Reproductive rights activists exploded in protest as employers including JPMorgan, CVS and Disney said they would pay travel costs for employees seeking access. President Joe Biden warned that women’s rights and health are at risk under the GOP-appointed majority’s ruling, and pledged he would protect access to early-pregnancy abortion drugs. But next up for reconsideration by the six justice majority, which includes all three of Donald Trump’s appointees, could be contraception and gay marriage. Noah Feldman, writing in Bloomberg Opinion, says “it’s open season on fundamental rights.”  

Earlier this week, the same six justices moved to radically expand a different right, overturning many laws that bar carrying a gun in public. In New York, officials are working to come up with new regulations that satisfy the decision while limiting its impact, which firearm restriction proponents warn will be more gun violence and deaths. Meanwhile, Congress passed new, bipartisan gun legislation, the first in decades but limited in scope. The bill, to be signed by Biden, doesn’t address the assault weapons, ammunition or minimum purchasing age that figured in recent massacres in an Uvalde, Texas, and Buffalo, New York.