Has Clarence Thomas set his sights on overturning gay marriage and birth control next? Judge drops a hint
SCOTUS overruled Roe v Wade landmark on Friday, June 24, splitting the audience into two halves - those supporting the decision and those who opposed it. The Court, in a 6-3 decision, overturned the landmark which now provided individual states the power to set their own rules regarding abortion rights. Now, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has appealed to his colleagues to re-examine the rulings that protect gay marriages, both control, and same-sex marriages, and even potentially overrule them. This statement comes in support of the Friday decision regarding abortion rights.
The judge, a conservative, wrote that the court should try and reconsider other cases based on the legal theory of “substantive due process”, including rulings that protect and establish LGBTQ and contraceptive rights. The 74-year-old judge wrote, "In future cases, we should reconsider all of this Court’s substantive due process precedents, including Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell." This comment suggests that the right-wing-controlled court might return to more issues after addressing abortion rights.
The judge clearly pointed out three vital cases to the development of America. The 1965 case of Griswold v Connecticut established that married couples can freely use contraceptives without the interference of the government. In 2003, the court established that the states cannot interfere in consensual gay sex in the case of Lawrence v Texas. Obergefell v Hodges, a 2015 case, established a constitutional right to same-sex marriage. These are some of the issues that are right up the ally of the conservative judge and might push the court to focus on them too.
Who's Clarence Thomas?
Clarence Thomas is a 74-year-old American lawyer and a jurist who serves as the Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court. Serving since 1991, he was nominated by President George HW Bush. He's the second African-American to serve on the Court, succeeding Thurgood Marshall. Ever since 2018, he has been the longest-serving member of the Court with a tenure of over 30 years. Moreover, this makes him the most senior associate justice on the Supreme Court. He's also considered as one of the most conservative members of the Supreme Court by many of his colleagues.
Justice Samuel Alito, announcing the overruling wrote, “We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled. The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision. That provision has been held to guarantee some rights that are not mentioned in the Constitution, but any such right must be ‘deeply rooted in this Nation’s history and tradition’ and ’implicit in the concept of ordered liberty. It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.” Those against the decision have also slammed late Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Barack Obama for not taking proper actions when the time was right.