Political Science 1100, Introduction to American Politics, April 16, 2014
How the Courts Make Policy: The Case of Abortion
2. Roe v. Wade
A. Why Roe Sought an Injunction
B. Why A U.S. District Court? Original Jurisdiction
C. Why An Appeal ?
No One Liked the District Court's Decision so
they Appealed To
The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court Of Appeals ...
... and Then To The U.S. Supreme Court
D. Key Supreme Court Policy Choices
- Decision #1: Should We Hear the Case?
Does Roe Have "Standing"?
- Decision #2: Should we decide in Favor of Roe or Wade?
The decision in favor of Roe
- Decision #3:
Should we set policy guidelines for constitutional abortion rights for the whole nation ?
First trimester: No interference
the abortion decision must be
left to the medical judgment of the
pregnant woman's attending physician.
(b) Second trimester: State regulation
the State, in promoting its interest in the health of the mother, may, if it chooses, regulate the abortion procedure in ways that are reasonably related to maternal health.
Third trimester: States can ban most abortions
For the stage subsequent to viability, the State in promoting its interest in the potentiality of human life may, if it chooses, regulate, and even proscribe, abortion except where it is necessary, in appropriate medical judgment, for the preservation of the life or health of the mother.
Politics and Abortion Policy after Roe
The Mobilization of interest groups
Federalism matters - state actions.
1. How can you measure American prosperity?
A. Economic Wealth: Gross
Domestic Product, or GDP
B. Jobs and Unemployment
C. Prices and Inflation
2. Markets and Politics
- The ideal of the "free
market" is very attractive to Americans in theory -
Because it promises both freedom and prosperity
- Government are indispensable for markets (for example, government protects property rights and contracts)
in practice, Americans constantly ask government to intervene in markets because:
safe from physical harm so they want a military and police to
keep them physically safe
want their property rights and contracts to be protected so they want
courts and police
protection from the problems that can come with free markets, like fraud and pollution so they want government regulation
economic difficulties they cannot control, like old age, unemployment or
serious or chronic sickness
want public goods, that is, parks, museums, roads, airports, public education that business will not provide satisfactorily
State: Americans do not realize how much they need and depend on