By Quentin Choy
March 9, 2021
Asa Hutchinson, the Republican governor of Arkansas signed into law a bill which would ban virtually all abortions within the Natural State. Supported by the Arkansas State Legislature as well as by Arkansasans, Governor Hutchinson approved the bill becoming law, knowing the ripple effect it would have on national politics.
Bill SB6 is likely to face heavy opposition from Democratic voters in Arkansas and massive opposition nationwide, similar to opposition which faced another Alabama anti-abortion bill in 2019 which was supported by Governor Kay Ivey.
Hutchinson admitted that the law is in violation of federal law established in the controversial Supreme Court case, Roe v. Wade (1973), which protected the right for a woman to have an abortion. “SB6 is in contradiction of binding precedents of the U.S. Supreme Court, but it is the intent of the legislation to set the stage for the Supreme Court overturning current case law,” Hutchinson said, in a quote from The Hill.
This direct contradiction to the Supreme Court seemingly eggs on a future case regarding the legality of Huchinson’s law. With a conservative court, there is a chance that Roe could be reversed, although SCOTUS likely doesn’t want to deal with such a controversial case any time soon.
Will future governors take similar actions in signing illegal laws that will force the Supreme Court out to reaffirm or reject the legality of already decided cases? I could see this same sort of tactic being utilized by governors to force the Supreme Court’s hand on hot-topic issues such as immigration, same-sex marriage, and marijuana legalization, which would be detrimental to the country and would further widen the political divide.
Image Courtesy of NBC News