Pro-Abortion Supreme Court Justice David Souter to Retire, Had Backed Roe
by Steven Ertelt
May 1, 2009
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Supreme Court Justice David Souter, one of the staunch abortion advocates giving the high court its pro-abortion majority, has announced he will retire at the end of June. The retirement will likely set up a fierce battle as President Barack Obama is expected to appoint an abortion advocate to replace him.
Souter was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1990 after a lengthy career as an attorney, prosecutor, and judge at various levels.
He was expected to provide another vote on the high court in favor of overturning Roe v. Wade, but betrayed pro-life advocates by joining pro-abortion Justices Sandra Day OConnor and Anthony M. Kennedy to write a plurality opinion in a landmark abortion case, Planned Parenthood of Eastern Pennsylvania v. Casey.
The Casey decision allowed state legislatures to enact any of several pro-life laws to limit abortion, but it upheld Roe and cemented virtually unlimited abortions across the country.
The retirement is a mixture of good and bad news for the pro-life community.
On the plus side, the Supreme Court loses one of its pro-abortion stalwarts, but the down side is that Obama is expected to appoint a pro-abortion jurist who will potentially help keep legal abortions in place for decades.
The issue of Supreme Court judges came up frequently during the presidential elections last year and then-candidate Barack Obama made it clear he would only appoint abortion activists to the court.
Following Obamas election, Supreme Court retirement speculation focused on Ginsburg, who has undergone treatment for pancreatic cancer. But Ginsburg quickly indicated she had no intention of retirement this year.
And, at age 69, Souter is much younger than either Ginsburg, 76, or Justice John Paul Stevens, 89, another abortion advocate who has been mentioned as a possible retirement from the Supreme Court.
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