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Your Evening Briefing: Fallout From Abortion Ruling Spreads Across US

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An abortion rights demonstrator holds a sign next to an anti-abortion protester outside a Planned Parenthood clinic in New York City on June 4.

An abortion rights demonstrator holds a sign next to an anti-abortion protester outside a Planned Parenthood clinic in New York City on June 4.

Photographer: Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis News

Since Friday, the US Supreme Court has been under withering fire from many quarters (and many countries) for its leap to the right on guns and abortion. New polls affirmed that a majority of Americans reject its judgment that women do not have a right to end a pregnancy under the Constitution and see the ruling in that case as purely political. While anti-abortion groups and the gun industry praised the matching 6-3 opinions by the Republican-appointed majority, some  legal observers have eviscerated the reasoning used by Clarence Thomas (who is urging more federal rights be targeted for review) and Samuel Alito to arrive at their conclusions. Both the Democratic-appointed dissenters and members of Congress are now calling into question the court’s legitimacy as an institution. But on Monday, the same six justices picked by George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush and Donald Trump kept going, moving to dismantle precedent in yet another foundational area of American jurisprudence: the separation of church and state. In ruling that a public high school employee could lead prayers on the field after a sports event, the six justices built on another of their decisions last week, one in which they held that taxpayers could be made to fund religious schools in certain circumstances. 

The fallout from the majority’s decision to reverse Roe v. Wade continues to spread across the country, to state capitals and lower courts. But abortion opponents, having secured their decades-old dream, are finding they don’t all agree on what to go after next—some, led by former Vice President Mike Pence, want to end abortion rights for all women. Part of the anti-abortion movement’s long-term strategy has included the use of so-called crisis pregnancy centers, which are funneling cash into social media efforts, targeting teens and young adults on TikTok, Instagram and Snapchat. But some of them, as it turns out, have been using these platforms to spread what health care professionals warn is harmful misinformation