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State Advocacy Groups Explain What Life Would Look Like if Roe is Overturned

Originally Published by NBC26 News, May 3, 2022

State advocacy groups are sharing their thoughts on the leaked draft of a Supreme Court opinion that would overturn the 1973 Roe vs. Wade decision.

Advocates with Wisconsin Right to Life said they’re “cautiously optimistic” about the direction of the draft opinion.

“We recognize that things could certainly change, but we are hopeful that the Supreme Court will stand by the draft and ultimately overturn Roe,” said Gracie Skogman, Wisconsin Right to Life legislative director.

Skogman said it’s a step in the right direction for the pro-life movement.

“I think Wisconsin is in a very wonderful and exciting position to defend life,” Skogman said. “I know that there are many, many Wisconsinites who are pro life and are excited to continue this fight. I think that what we look to next, is what does it look like to provide more support to women in need, and try to alleviate some of the concerns and pressures that would have lead them to chose abortion. So that’s what I hope Wisconsin will have in the horizon in a post-Roe United States.”

On the other side, those with Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin said the draft is a blow to health care.

“Deciding when or if to have a child is one of the most personal decisions someone can make and understanding what’s at stake for the people of Wisconsin, it was devastating,” said Tanya Atkinson, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin president.

Nearly all abortions would become criminal in Wisconsin if Roe vs. Wade is overturned. That’s because Wisconsin has a law on the books that makes abortions illegal in almost all cases, except when the life of the mother is in danger. That law is currently unenforceble under Roe vs. Wade.

Under that Wisconsin law, anyone who performs an abortion would be committing a felony and could face up to six years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Atkinson said she hopes to see that ban removed.

“This could have very far reaching impacts,” Atkinson said. “We know there’s 1.3 million women of reproductive age in the state of Wisconsin. And abortion is health care. So not having access to this basic health care that many women need – approximately one in three women will have an abortion at some point in her life – could have devastating impacts on families and on public health.”

A January Marquette University Law School poll found 72% of people opposed overturning Roe vs. Wade while 28% were in favor of it. However, 49% of people were in favor of restricting abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

The Supreme Court is expected to give a final ruling in June or July. The leaked draft is not an official confirmation.

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