Overruling Roe

JMHACLJ at aol.com JMHACLJ at aol.com
Thu Nov 17 09:57:14 PST 2005


 
In a message dated 11/17/2005 9:57:20 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
marty.lederman at comcast.net writes:

For  obvious reasons, there will virtually never be such suits, and they will 
 rarely succeed -- and therefore, regulations that might have been facially  
invalidated under Casey will in fact be applied to countless women in  the 
relevant jurisdiction who would have been protected from such restrictions  under 
Casey itself.


Why is this premise obvious?  Are there now fewer attorneys fighting  for 
maintenance and expansion of the abortion right than when, as a nervous  young 
woman, Sarah Weddington was soothed by that famous wink and nod from the  bench?
 
I run to court occasionally.  Typically in battles over public access  for 
speakers whose rights are discounted or denied entirely by federal  government 
agencies (both Republican and Democratic administrations).   Often, to get 
there, I stay up all night.  I am not always  successful.  But from time to time, 
a judge remembers that Third Proposed  Amendment to our beloved Constitution.  
That glorious restraint on federal  power.  And those moments are sweet for 
the me, as counsel, as is the  moment that flows from it, when a client stands 
alongside a road way with a  modern day equivalent of John the Baptist's 
imprecation, "it is not lawful for  you to have your brother's wife."
 
Many of the abortion demonstration battles I have fought in eighteen years  
of litigation have schooled me on the "enemy."  That is, on the legal pools  of 
talent opposite from my side.  When I participated in the trifecta of  cases 
in 1989 that led to Bray vs Alexandria Women's Health Center (I was the  chief 
researcher and writer of all the trial court materials opposing injunctive  
relief in those cases), I looked across the courtroom at a legal team of bright 
 and talented Ivy Leaguers donated as pro bono attorneys from the prestigious 
 Covington & Burling.  Such pro bono support in these cases IS NOT  RARE.  In 
1986, while in law school in St. Louis, I read the Sunday  advertisement from 
Missouri Chapter of the ACLU soliciting persons that may have  been clients 
at a crisis pregnancy center who wanted to complain about alleged  deceptive 
practices.
 
All that goes to say, from this player's perspective, that the only reason  
such litigation will be rare is because some women will sit on their lees and 
do  nothing, while the mares and stallions in the pro abortion legal stables 
are  chomping at the bit to git to court.
 
Jim Henderson
Senior Counsel
ACLJ
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