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NJ ‘Will Not Go Backwards on Reproductive Rights’

Governor Phil Murphy told New Jerseyans that the state “will not go backwards on reproductive rights,” after Politico released a bombshell report Monday indicating that the Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade.

According to an initial draft majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito, which was obtained by Politico, the court has voted to strike down the 1973 decision, which guaranteed federal constitutional protections of abortion rights. In the draft, Alito forcefully rejects the landmark decision, as well as Planned Parenthood v. Casey, a 1992 ruling that largely maintained the right.

“A truly dark day in America with the news reports that the Supreme Court has voted to overturn Roe v. Wade. This year, I signed the Freedom of Reproductive Choice Act – codifying a woman’s right to choose into state law. New Jersey will not go backwards on reproductive rights,” Murphy tweeted late Monday.

“I want to assure every New Jerseyan that today’s news about the Supreme Court does not change access to abortion in our state. Access to reproductive health care remains available to anyone who needs it in New Jersey.”

The Supreme Court opinion is expected to come out in late June, according to CNN. It remains to be seen if the draft represents the conservative-tilted SCOTUS’ final position, as opinions can change during the drafting process.

“We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” Alito, a Trenton native, wrote in the draft, according to Politico’s report. “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.”

The opinion, a rare leak, drew swift condemnation from reproductive healthcare advocates across the country and in New Jersey, Murphy included.

Lieutenant Governor Sheila Oliver tweeted that, “For 49 years, women in this country have had the right to make their own reproductive health care decisions. We MUST fight this!” Senator Cory Booker tweeted that, “Deciding to overturn Roe v. Wade would be an outrageous attack on one of Americans’ most fundamental rights.” Senator Bob Menendez added that “Every woman’s autonomy is on the line. This decision will impact all of us as Republicans weaponize this to erode more and more of our rights over time.”

The blue-leaning state’s top Republicans have largely been silent on the matter.

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