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'Roe' Seeks to Overturn Historic Abortion Ruling


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http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,89663,00.html

'Roe' Seeks to Overturn Historic Abortion Ruling

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

By Liza Porteus

The "Roe" of the landmark Roe v. Wade (search) Supreme Court decision is asking the nation's highest court to overturn its 1973 ruling that made abortion legal throughout the United States.

On the 33rd anniversary of her initial lawsuit, which resulted in the high court's historic ruling three years later, Norma McCorvey (search) announced Tuesday she will petition the court to reopen the original case, based on changes in law and technology over the last 30 years.

"I'm sorry that I signed that affidavit," McCorvey said during the press conference Tuesday, referring to when she became the plaintiff in the original case.

She said the court case "brought the holocaust of abortion" but that with her legal action Tuesday, "I feel good about myself, I really do. I feel like the weight of the world has really been lifted off my shoulders."

McCorvey made the announcement at the Ferris Plaza Park in Dallas, just blocks from the Earl Cabell Federal Building, where the original lawsuit was entered.

Abortion-rights groups contacted by Fox News said they had no initial comment on McCorvey's request.

"I long for the day that justice will be done and the guilt from all of these deaths will be removed from my shoulders," McCorvey said in a statement announcing the intent of the motion. "I want to do everything in my power to help women and their children.

"The issue is justice for the unborn, justice in this case because it was fraudulent, and justice for what is right."

More technology exists now than it did 30 years ago, McCorvey told Fox News Tuesday, such as three-dimensional sonograms that can show women that the fetus growing inside of them is viable.

Whereas the argument over when life begins was a philosophical one 30 years ago, it now is a scientific one that says life begins at conception, McCorvey said.

"We're just trying to warn women that they do have other alternatives to abortion," McCorvey told Fox News.

After arguing the pro-choice side of the abortion debate for years, McCorvey in 1995 converted to Roman Catholicism and is now 100 percent pro-life.

"I'm not anti-abortion, I'm pro-life," she said.

McCorvey and more than 1,000 other women who have had abortions are including statements in the petition to the court on how abortions have affected their lives.

Among the effects, the women say they: became alcoholics; "hated life in general," "was unable to bond with anyone;" suffered from depression, various medical problems, years of mood swings and eating disorders, panic disorder and promiscuity, post-abortion syndrome; "felt empty inside;" "lack of ability to deal adequately with true love and sex in marriage;" went to therapy for anger and other symptoms; and "I'm always thinking about my unborn child."

McCorvey's lawyer, Allan Parker, lead attorney for the Texas-based Justice Foundation (search), said recent changes in law make the court's decision no longer just.

"Why do women have abortions? Because they don't think they can take care of the child," Parker told Fox News.

"I believe with all my heart that it's time for the country to re-examine the social experiment that was abortion," Parker said.

He said it often takes years for women to feel and realize the effects abortion has on them.

"For many women, it takes 10 or 15 years of denial before they finally recognize what they've done before they finally seek counseling," he said.

McCorvey began her association with one of the most controversial issues in this country in 1970, when she became "Jane Roe," the lead plaintiff in the class-action lawsuit filed to challenge the anti-abortion laws in Texas.

The case was appealed to the Supreme Court, which handed down its controversial ruling on Jan. 22, 1973. The decision legalized the right to an abortion in all 50 states.

McCorvey, who was 21 when the case was filed and was on her third pregnancy, never had an abortion and gave birth to a girl, who was given up for adoption. In the 1980s, McCorvey went public with her identity and wrote a book about her life titled I Am Roe: My Life, Roe v. Wade, and Freedom of Choice.

Although there have been many challenges to Roe v. Wade in the past 30 years, McCorvey's legal team says her case is different because the plaintiff is actually asking for the case to be overturned.

Under certain rules of law, parties can seek relief from an earlier court order that is no longer supported by law.

Parker cited a 1997 decision in the case of Agostini v. Felton, in which the Supreme Court used a post-judgment motion by the plaintiff to overturn the original decision. In the original case decided in 1985, the court prohibited New York City from allowing public school teachers to teach in parochial schools.

Twelve years later, petitioners -- some of which were teachers bound by that injunction -- wanted the decision dropped, saying laws and educational policy passed since then made legal what the original injunction was designed to prevent. In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court allowed public school teachers to tutor private school students in their private schools.

McCorvey's legal team claims there are three major arguments to reopen and overturn the case:

• There is more evidence being submitted proving the harmful effects of abortions on women now that should outweigh McCorvey's single, original testimony 30 years ago arguing for abortion.

• The question of when life begins has been answered by scientific evidence within the past 30 decades.

• Various "Baby Moses" laws in 40 states say the states will take care of a child if the mother cannot, providing an alternative to abortion.

Fox News' Mike Tobin contributed to this report

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here comes the new war :)

I do have to agree with the advancement in technology with what we know today this could change everything. I don't agree with abortions, but I also don't think I have the right to decide, it is the womans choice and body. I do think before they have an abortion let them have a sonagram to show them what they are about to kill, that might change some minds.

The only way I agree with abortions is when it is because of rape or insist. I don't like it as a tool to justify a bad decision.

I have known many women who have had them, and were never the same. Most of them said they wished they could have had the baby afterall.

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Why do people make such a big deal about abortion in the US? If you go anywhere in Europe you'll find that it is accepted. I just love the people that are anti-abortion and yet are also looking to slash the education, healthcare, medicare and welfare budgets. All of which would increase if abortion were banned in the US.

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jbooma, not to pick on you, because in a lot of ways, I view this issue the same way as you, but let me ask... Why is abortion OK in cases or rape or incest? The "fetus" didn't commit a crime?

I never understood (and jbooma, you didn't say this) the people that say abortion is murder, but it's ok to murder when it's rape or incest??!! Isn't murder... murder?

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Originally posted by Bufford T Justice

There are a lot of things that people do to themselves and others that you or I could say isn't "right".

True, however like I said I might not agree with an abortion it isn't my decision though. I do think if you have one then the person should have a sonagram or ultrasound before they have the abortion that might change their minds.

I don't think the public is educated on what happens if you have one. I knew some girls in school that had one just because they could.

Originally posted by codeorama

jbooma, not to pick on you, because in a lot of ways, I view this issue the same way as you, but let me ask... Why is abortion OK in cases or rape or incest? The "fetus" didn't commit a crime?

I never understood (and jbooma, you didn't say this) the people that say abortion is murder, but it's ok to murder when it's rape or incest??!! Isn't murder... murder?

My guess is rape isn't consenting, and could you imagine raising the child of the person that raped you??? That would be to much to handle. However most of the time after a rape they would give the woman the morning after pill, so it isn't like you wait a couple of months and then say I am pregnant.

In case of incest, I don't know. I think the reason why the law passed because was because of the possiblility of the baby being handicapped, or incest is a form of rape. Like I said I don't know just took a shot at it.

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Abortion should be legal in every and all instances. Those who perform them, have them, support them whatever, will face a greater jury than I can ever provide. I dont want public funding for it and I want the idea that a woman has ultimate control of her body applied to every juudicial ruling.

That being said, Roe is bad law. It should be overturned.

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I agree with Kilmer in that abortion should NOT be publicly funded.

I just don't understand the people who are against abortion because they think it's murder, but they are ok with making exceptions.... It's ok to take the perceived "innocent life" if it was conceived against the mother's will... That makes no sense, those same people will argue that the "innocent life" doesn't have a choice to live if the mother chooses abortion, the "innocent life" didn't have a choice in being conceived either.

Bottom line for me is that I find it hard for "Men" to have a say over a woman's body and her choice.

Kilmer said it best too....... a greater jury awaits regardless.

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For all those advocating the NOW line that it's a women's body it's "her choice" then you must support prostitution being legalized. It's "her body" and what she does in the "privacy" of the bedroom is her business.

But of course NOW dosen't argue this when it comes to prostitution. NOW argues that "women" would be/are exploited and somehow would be/are controlled by "men" and therefore prostitution must remain illegal.

I just find it utterly hypocritical and disingenious of those who advocate legalized abortion with taxpayer funds but somehow will do everything to insure that the "act" of becoming pregant is illegal when cash is involved.

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Jimbo said it best...

It's also a waste of government money trying to police prostitution. Give the Christian Right the blame for that.

That being said, I would never "spend time" with a prostitute, but it doesn't hurt me personally when someone else does.

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Originally posted by The Evil Genius

Go to Nevada.

Prostitution is legal - when the state controls (regulates) it. Much like Abortion.

Not quite. Only select counties in Nevada have legalized prostitution. For example, it's illegal in Las Vegas. Yeah I know go figure.

And the "States" do not control abortion it's Federal authority and that trumps State authority.

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I guess I am pro-choice because I think this issue gets way too much attention. If a woman wants to have an abortion that's her call, not mine. I really don't care. You want to argue its the same for prostitution, fine. Make that legal too for all I care.

I do think federally funding is overkill. Let the states decide what they want to do and let it go.

And yeah, the 'rape or incest' disclaimer really cracks me up ... especially the rape part. either abortion is murder or it isn't. I guess if it's not the rape victim's 'fault' she got pregnant then go ahead and kill the baby. Makes me wonder if some pro-lifers think of forcing women to have unwanted kids as some form of punishment for being promiscuous.

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Originally posted by aREDSKIN

Not quite. Only select counties in Nevada have legalized prostitution. For example, it's illegal in Las Vegas. Yeah I know go figure.

And the "States" do not control abortion it's Federal authority and that trumps State authority.

aRedskin,

I believe that concept to be fundementally wrong. States do control Abortion...not all states, I believe, have laws that outlaw partial birth abortions.

Age and consent (parental notice, spousal notice...etc.) is where states differ as well when it comes to abortion.

BTW - Kilmer - what do you think was fundamentally wrong with Roe v. Wade - the taking away of state power (I am guessing)?

Roe v Wade, from what I can tell...declared that the guarantee of liberty in the 14th Amendment extends a right to privacy thats broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy. Or at least, thats what I gleamed from it from reading various sites and Justice Blackmun's opinion...

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Originally posted by Henry

Makes me wonder if some pro-lifers think of forcing women to have unwanted kids as some form of punishment for being promiscuous.

Totally agree here. That seems to be the entire point of many pro lifers. I agree that it sucks to use abortion as birth control, but to eliminate it to punish a woman is just as ignorant.

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If it's legal at conception, I see no reason to define a date somewhere else. Whats the difference between 6 months and 6 months and 1 day?

TEG, my problem is twofold. I think it's a wrong interpretation of the 14th amendment and I think it takes power away from the states where I think it belongs.

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