Opinion: Abortion is not going away for GOP in 2024

The U.S. Supreme Court this week agreed to hear a case that would limit the availability of mifepristone, the most common drug used for abortions. A decision will likely come in June, in the midst of the 2024 election. (Photo illustration by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images/TNS)

Credit: TNS

Credit: TNS

The U.S. Supreme Court this week agreed to hear a case that would limit the availability of mifepristone, the most common drug used for abortions. A decision will likely come in June, in the midst of the 2024 election. (Photo illustration by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images/TNS)

The U.S. Supreme Court this week all but guaranteed that abortion rights will again be a top issue in the 2024 elections, as the justices agreed to hear a case that would limit the availability of mifepristone, the most common drug used for abortions.

The move means the court will hear arguments on the abortion pill in the spring, with a decision likely in June — two years after the justices struck down Roe v. Wade, which triggered a political backlash against Republicans.

All of that will happen in the midst of a presidential election that could feature former President Donald Trump — whose nominees to the Supreme Court paved the way to overturn Roe.

“Remember in November,” said U.S. Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn.

Since the Dobbs decision in 2022 negated Roe, Democrats have shown repeatedly that they can win when they are able to put abortion rights front and center in a campaign — even in red states.

“People don’t want politicians involved in their personal health care decisions,” U.S. Rep. Nikema Williams, D-Atlanta, said after voters in Ohio last month easily approved a plan to add abortion rights to that state’s constitution.

Meanwhile, Republicans continue to struggle with this new political environment — where polls consistently show a strong majority opposes their big success at the U.S. Supreme Court.

The court’s move to hear the abortion pill case came on the heels of a separate controversy in Texas, where a 31-year-old woman had to go to another state for treatment after the state’s highest court refused to give her a medical exception for an abortion.

Kate Cox had asked for an exception because her fetus had been diagnosed with a fatal genetic condition.

“I need to end my pregnancy now,” Cox argued. The Texas Supreme Court refused.

“Legal and medical chaos in states like Texas is a direct result of Roe v. Wade being overturned,” President Joe Biden said as he condemned GOP calls for a national abortion ban. “It’s out of step with the majority of Americans.”

In Congress, the reaction of Republicans to the Texas case was notable — not for what they said — but for how quiet they were.

For example, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, told reporters to call his press office when asked about the matter. It was a different story for Democrats.

“Abortion rights are on the ballot in 2024,” said U.S. Rep. Colin Allred, D-Texas, who is running for Cruz’s Senate seat.

Does abortion guarantee election wins for Democrats? Of course not. But it will certainly help them energize voters in 2024. Republicans already know that all too well.

Jamie Dupree has covered national politics and Congress from Washington since the Reagan administration. His column appears weekly in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. For more, check out his Capitol Hill newsletter at http://jamiedupree.substack.com.

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