What an overturn of Row vs Wade could mean for Louisiana

Posted at 10:08 PM, Jul 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-10 23:08:06-04

Presidents Trump’s nomination for the Supreme Court is raising questions about the future of Roe vs Wade. In 2006, Judge Brett Kavanaugh told senators during a judicial confirmation hearing that he would follow the decision "faithfully and fully", however, he refused to answer questions about his own personal feelings about the 1973 decision of legalizing abortion in the United States. 

Critics of the nomination say if confirmed, Kavanaugh would be the swing vote to overturn the ruling. It’s a ruling that could have an immediate effect in the state of Louisiana. 

Dr. Rick Swanson, a political science professor at UL, said this decision could cause a national uproar.

"If Judge Kavanaugh is confirmed and I give it at least a 50/50 chance he will be, I think that there is also a 50/50 chance that Roe versus Wade will be overturned," Swanson said. 

If Roe vs Wade is overturned, abortions would automatically be illegal in Louisiana because of a trigger law that is already in place.

"If Roe vs Wade is overturned, all abortions would be completely outlawed after weeks of pregnancy unless the woman’s life is in danger. There are no exceptions for incest or rape," Swanson said

Swanson says states would be allowed to criminalize and set penalties for abortion. He said that means Louisiana could go beyond its trigger law and outlaw abortions in all instances. 

"They could make it a crime for the doctor, for the woman, or even someone encouraging the woman because in most states encouraging someone to commit a crime is a crime. It completely opens it up for the state to do anything that they want," Swanson said. 

While Roe vs Wade has been on the book for half a century, Swanson says that future Supreme Court Justices won’t reverse that decision.

"One of the most famous cases was Brown vs Board and it was overturned  Plessy vs Furgeson and that was after six decades. Even though Roe vs Wade is a half a century old that doesn’t matter. If the court says we think we were wrong then they’ll overturn it," Swanson said.