(LifeSiteNews) — Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts noted during Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization oral hearings Wednesday that Roe v. Wade places American abortion law in the same class as China and North Korea.
Roberts pointed out during questioning that the 15-week mark, at which abortions are banned in the Mississippi law HB 1510 at issue in Dobbs, is not only “not a dramatic departure from viability,” but also a “standard that the vast majority of other countries have.”
“When you get to the viability standard, we share that standard with the People’s Republic of China and North Korea,” said Roberts, highlighting the fact that the legalization of on-demand abortion until the age of viability is something the U.S. has in common with these brutally oppressive Asian nations and a handful of other countries.
As even the left-wing Washington Post has admitted, the United States, China, and North Korea are among seven of 198 nations that allow elective abortions (abortion for any reason) after 20 weeks of pregnancy. The others are Canada, the Netherlands, Singapore, and Vietnam.
The pro-life Charlotte Lozier Institute found that “47 out of 50 European countries analyzed” “either do not allow elective abortion (eight countries) or limit elective abortion to 15 weeks or earlier (39 countries). Of the 59 countries in the world that permit elective abortion, 36 limit elective abortion at 12 weeks’ gestation, and nine countries limit elective abortion before the 12th week.”
Roberts also questioned the inherent logic of establishing a “right” to unfettered abortion until the age of viability.
He asked attorney Julie Rikelman, who represents the Mississippi abortion facility Jackson Women’s Health Organization, during questioning, “If you think that the issue is one of choice … viability, it seems to me, doesn’t have anything to do with choice. If it really is an issue about choice, why is 15 weeks not enough time?”
Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization concerns the constitutionality of Mississippi’s HB 1510 law banning abortions from being committed past 15 weeks for any reason other than physical medical emergencies or severe fetal abnormalities. HB 1510 challenges Roe v. Wade precedent that imposed on all 50 states a “right” to pre-viability abortion on demand.
While several commentators, pro-life and pro-abortion alike, observed that Wednesday’s court proceedings indicate Roe could be overturned, others cautioned that the justices’ decision-making process is not fully captured during cross-examination, and therefore a split decision upholding HB 1510 without ending Roe or Casey remains a serious possibility.