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Roe v. Wade

The case of Roe v. Wade went to trial after an unmarried and pregnant Texas woman, Norma L. McCorvey (alias Jane Roe) was refused when she tried to get an abortion.

Roe and her attorney's filed a lawsuit against Henry Wade, the district attorney of Dallas, Texas in the context that Texas law made it a felony for a woman to have an abortion unless it was for the purpose of saving the life of the mother.

Roe's suit contested the Texas law on the grounds that it violated her rights of personal liberty that are guaranteed in the U. S. constitution as implied in the First, Fifth, Ninth, and Fourteenth Amendments.

Although the district court ruled in her favor, it refused to grant an injunction against the enforcement of the laws barring abortion. The case then made it's way to the United States Supreme Court.

On January 22, 1973, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Roe in a landmark decision that gave women the right to have an abortion and invalidated any state laws that prohibited first trimester abortions.

In a 7 to 2 majority vote, the Supreme Court agreed that the decision to have an abortion is a woman's fundamental right and ruled that this right should be upheld by federal statutes within the framework of the Constitution.

The right to have an abortion is a very important issue for women because of the impact that an unwanted pregnancy has on their life. Most women feel that they have a right to make decisions that pertain to their own bodies.

The Supreme Courts' decision still remains one of the most controversial and divisive rulings in America with many pro-life activists seeking to overturn the courts' ruling while pro-choice groups remain staunchly supportive of the decision.


  • In most opinion polls, the majority of those polled oppose the overturning of Roe v. Wade.
  • Throughout history, abortions were not illegal and not always frowned upon as being immoral.
  • McCorvey (Roe) gave birth before her case was won in the Supreme Court.

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