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Roe v. Wade | Democrats urged to ‘do something’ as abortion rights supporters chant at U.S. Supreme Court

Following the leak of an initial draft opinion that would overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, demonstrators made their voices heard.

Moira Warburton
Pro-choice activists gather at the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC, on May 2, 2022. - The Supreme Court is poised to strike down the right to abortion in the US, according to a leaked draft of a majority opinion that would shred nearly 50 years of constitutional protections. The draft, obtained by Politico, was written by Justice Samuel Alito, and has been circulated inside the conservative-dominated court, the news outlet reported. Politico stressed that the document it obtained is a  draft and opinions could change. The court is expected to issue a decision by June. The draft opinion calls the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade decision "egregiously wrong from the start." (Photo by Stefani Reynolds / AFP) (Photo by STEFANI REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images)

Hundreds of abortion rights supporters gathered in anger at the U.S. Supreme Court after an unprecedented leak showed a majority of justices poised to overturn the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

Draft opinion published on SCOTUS decision

Within hours of Politico’s publication on Monday of an initial draft opinion that would overturn the landmark decision, a crowd was calling on Democrats in Congress to take action to protect access to abortion, while decrying a possible ruling that would take away what they see as a fundamental right.

“The first line in the draft is that this is a moral issue,” Annie McDonnell, 19, a student at George Washington University, said, referring to the draft opinion. “If it’s a moral issue, you shouldn’t be depriving us of our choice.”

“Justices get out of my vagina,” one sign held aloft read. “I love someone who had an abortion,” read another.

The crowd was interspersed with a smaller number of anti-abortion activists, including some with drums and guitars chanting, “Hey, hey. Ho, ho. Roe v. Wade has got to go.”

"Abortion is healthcare," abortion rights supporters chanted back. Chants of "Do something Democrats," also broke out.

Based on the opinion written by conservative Justice Samuel Alito, the court would find that the Roe v. Wade decision was wrongly decided because the U.S. Constitution makes no specific mention of abortion rights. Reuters was not able to confirm the authenticity of the draft.

An uphill battle

Moira Flath, 22, said she was "horrified" when she got a notification of the news around 9:15 p.m.

“I think a part of me has to be cautiously optimistic, like seeing people out here who are willing to get up at 10, 11 at night and do this gives me hope for my generation, but it’s going to be a very uphill battle,” the University of Delaware student said.

Her roommate Erin Sheehan, 21, said: “I think everyone should be able to fight for this and no one, especially no men, should tell us what we can or cannot do with our bodies.”