Breaking News
More () »

Top questions about Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade leak

One of the top-searched questions on Google since news of the leak broke was, "Is Roe v. Wade overturned?"

MINNEAPOLIS — With the future of a nearly 50-year-old law up in the air, many people are taking to the internet for answers. 

One of the top-searched questions on Google since news of the leak broke was, "Is Roe v. Wade overturned?" The simple answer is "no."

"Things could change between now and the time the official opinion is released, but as of right now, Roe v. Wade is still the law of the land when it comes to abortion rights," said Hamline political science professor David Schultz, who recently wrote a book on U.S. Supreme Court reasoning. 

Many others are asking what happens if the law is overturned. 

Currently there are 13 states with trigger laws in place, which means once the law is overturned, the abortion ban immediately goes into effect. 

Both North and South Dakota are trigger states. 

Planned Parenthood, NCS Chief Medical Officer Dr. Sarah Traxler currently performs abortion procedures in South Dakota. 

"We are certainly working on ways and funds and support and resources to help people travel from a restrictive environment to one in which they can get services," said Dr. Traxler. 

In the wake of the leaked documents, some are simply asking, "How does the nation's highest court decide to overturn a decision?" 

"They will usually say, 'Well, if the conditions under which that opinion were issued have so changed that the original decision is no longer viable, we'll change it,'" said Schultz. "This would be the only time in American history where it's reversed a decision, and has in the process, taken away a right from somebody," said Schultz. 

There's been a lot of talk about codification from lawmakers after Senator Bernie Sanders tweeted, "Congress must pass legislation that codifies Roe V. Wade as the law of the land in this country NOW." 

So, what exactly does that mean? 

"Codification would be taking the existing right that is in Roe v. Wade, and translating it into a statutory right or passing a law that says exactly the same thing," explained Schultz. 

He went on to say, "Congress couldn't overturn the decision if it's based on constitutional grounds, but they could pass a federal right protecting the right to abortion."

Experts say an official ruling on the law is expected by the end of June.

Watch more local news:

Watch the latest local news from the Twin Cities in our YouTube playlist:


Before You Leave, Check This Out