A pro-abortion lawyer nominated by Joe Biden for a federal judge position promised Wednesday to follow the U.S. Supreme Court abortion ruling Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health even though she argued against it.
Julie Rikelman represented the Mississippi abortion facility at the center of the Dobbs case as a lawyer with the Center for Reproductive Rights. In a historic June ruling, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade through Dobbs and allowed states to begin protecting unborn babies from abortion again.
During a hearing before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, Rikelman said she will follow the ruling even though she personally disagrees with it, Reuters reports. If confirmed, she would become a judge on the First Circuit Court of Appeals.
“Dobbs is now the law of the land, and I will follow it as I will follow all Supreme Court precedents,” she told the committee.
However, several Republican senators questioned her statement, pointing to her long record of abortion advocacy and public criticism of the June ruling.
“You have spent the majority of your professional life as an extreme zealot advocating for abortion,” U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, told her, according to the report. “That is clearly a heartfelt and personal passion of yours.”
U.S. Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, also questioned Rikelman about her pro-abortion beliefs, pointing to a recent statement she made about the Dobbs ruling creating the “biggest public health crisis that we have seen in decades,” the report continues.
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“In a world in which more babies are being born and being born alive than being aborted, you call that a public health crisis?” Lee said.
Rikelman said she would put aside her personal views and do her duty as a federal judge to follow Supreme Court precedent, including the recent abortion ruling.
Under the 1973 Roe decision, states were forced to legalize abortion on demand up to viability and allowed to legalize abortion up to birth. As a result, more than 63 million unborn babies and hundreds of mothers died in supposedly “safe, legal” abortions.
Now, because of Dobbs, states may protect unborn babies from abortion again, and 16 already have done so. According to SBA Pro-Life America, these laws are saving approximately 134,800 unborn babies from abortion.
More pro-life legislation could pass in the coming months. Last week, U.S. Senate Republicans introduced a bill that would protect approximately 55,800 unborn babies annually by prohibiting abortions after 15 weeks nationwide. Exceptions would be allowed in cases of rape, incest or threats to the mother’s life.
Polls consistently show Americans support legal protections for unborn babies, especially after the first trimester or once their heartbeat is detectable.
LifeNews recently highlighted 14 polls showing support for pro-life laws. One recent Wall Street Journal poll found 48 percent of Americans support banning abortions after 15 weeks while just 43 percent oppose it. Another poll by the Associated Press found even stronger support for such legislation, with 65 percent saying most or all abortions should be illegal in the second trimester and 80 percent in the third trimester.