Missouri officials, advocates and candidates react to Roe v. Wade overturning, abortion ban

·8 min read

Elected officials, advocacy groups and candidates across Missouri reacted to news Friday that the U.S. Supreme Court had overturned Roe v. Wade, which created a federal constitutional right to an abortion and returned the jurisdiction to states.

Missouri banned legal abortion in all situations but medical emergencies within minutes of the decision after the attorney general issued an opinion activating the state's "trigger law."

Here's how elected officials, advocacy groups and organizations, and political candidates reacted to the overturning of Roe v. Wade and banning of legal abortion in the Show-Me State.

More: Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, eliminating constitutional right to abortion

Missouri elected officials' reactions to Roe v. Wade overturn

U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley: "At long last, Roe is OVERRULED." ... "This is a momentous day in America, when the efforts of generations of modern-day abolitionists comes to fruition. One of the most unjust decisions in American history has been overturned."

U.S. Rep. Vicky Hartzler (running for U.S. Senate): “Today’s decision by the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade and uphold Mississippi’s pro-life law is a monumental win for the American people and millions of unborn lives. Nine unelected justices should never have imposed Roe’s radical abortion regime on the nation. This decision returns the debate to where it belongs — the people and their elected representatives."

U.S. Rep. Billy Long (running for U.S. Senate): "Roe v. Wade moves to the ash heap of history !!! It's done!!!"

Gov. Mike Parson: "Nothing in the text, history, or tradition of the United States Constitution gave un-elected federal judges authority to regulate abortion. We are happy that the U.S. Supreme Court has corrected this error and returned power to the people and the states to make these decisions."

Attorney General Eric Schmitt (running for U.S. Senate): "My office has been fighting to uphold the sanctity of life since I became attorney general, culminating in today’s momentous court ruling and attorney general opinion. I will continue the fight to protect all life, born and unborn."

Senate Majority Leader Caleb Rowden (R-Columbia): "Roe-v-Wade was, by every rational measure, a flawed judicial ruling. Today’s Dobbs ruling corrects a grave injustice that has cost tens of millions of babies the chance at life and liberty in the United States of America. Being pro-life shouldn’t be controversial, and it shouldn’t be classified as a 'political' position. It is simply a view, grounded for many in their religious faith, that life is precious and we as a society should do all we can to protect it."

House Minority Leader Crystal Quade (D-Springfield): "Just this past session, Missouri Republicans proposed bills criminalizing the treatment of ectopic pregnancies and crossing state lines to have an abortion in a state where the right to privacy and bodily autonomy is respected. With the federal courts no longer protecting basic rights, Missourians must elect more lawmakers who are willing to do so or we will quickly become a state where government oppression replaces personal freedom."

More: Missouri bans abortion, activating 'trigger law' after U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade

Advocacy groups' and organizations' reaction to U.S. Supreme Court decision

Yamelsie Rodríguez, president and CEO of Reproductive Health Services of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region: “Today is the worst case scenario for 36 million people of reproductive age who live in 26 states including Missouri where abortion is now poised to be banned. Everything that led to the overturning of Roe should be a stain on our history from which we must learn and do better. This begins a rebuilding of a future with abortion equity — not just rights or access, but rights and access for all people."

Lua María Henríquez, executive director of ACLU of Missouri: "The extreme, radical shift in the philosophy of the Supreme Court to remove rights granted by the Constitution regardless of nearly 50 years of precedent will undoubtedly force millions of people to face the life-altering consequences of being denied essential health care. The choice to have an abortion has been ripped from individuals and placed in predominantly white, male-led state legislatures across the country who have repeatedly failed to address issues that would make pregnancy safer or decrease the maternal mortality rate, which is four times higher for Black women than white women in Missouri."

Lucy Mayfield, organizer for Springfield Party for Socialism and Liberation: "The Supreme Court has declared war against women and our basic rights to control our own bodies. Now is the time to fight back. Millions of people going into the streets would make it clear that without justice there can be no peace. Neither the church nor the state has the right to tell women what we can do with our own bodies. ... Now is the time to fight back. Only a mass movement of the people can save abortion rights. Take to the streets throughout the United States."

Steve Rupp, president of Missouri Right to Life: "Today we thank God! May HE be with us as we continue to defend the most precious children in this new era! Today we celebrate and then we go back to work to protect unborn babies and women from the abortion industry. May God continue to bless our work."

More: In Springfield and need an abortion? Be prepared to travel 150 miles or more.

Political candidates & organizations react to overturn of Roe v. Wade

Former Gov. Eric Greitens (Republican for U.S. Senate): "Today’s decision by the Supreme Court is a huge victory for the life movement. Life is the most precious gift from our Creator and is always worthy of protection, especially the unborn who are the most vulnerable. We saw how liberals and extremists went to disgusting lengths to leak the draft opinion last month as a way to damage this sacred institution for their radical political agenda. But their reprehensible actions were no match for level-headed justices who looked at the case without prejudice or predisposition."

Lucas Kunce (Democrat for U.S. Senate): "For nearly 50 years, Roe v. Wade has been the law of the land. And now, the Supreme Court has taken away the right to choose. This is a Big Brother attack on all of us, and we have to fight back. Congress must immediately end the filibuster and codify Roe v. Wade. If they won't, then we must replace them. We all know who this decision will fall hardest on — working people and struggling families who are losing control over their own bodies and their economic opportunities. We cannot let this stand."

Trudy Busch Valentine (Democrat for U.S. Senate): "To those reeling from this news: I'm with you. I’ll work relentlessly for my constituents to be able to make their own healthcare decisions. This decision takes us backwards 50 years and lessens women’s independence and our rights. It especially affects the most vulnerable amongst us. Reproductive healthcare decisions are a woman's to make, and I will fight to protect our rights, to respect our intelligence and our choice, and to always advocate for our equality. We've come too far to turn back the clock."

Sen. Eric Burlison (Republican for U.S. House, District 7): "Decades of prayers answered. A wrong has finally been made right. #RoevsWade has finally been overturned!"

Sen. Mike Moon (Republican for U.S. House, District 7): "While I am happy for the SCOTUS ruling (reversing the 1973 Roe decision), If only a representative or senator had introduced legislation which would have corrected the court’s decision, we wouldn’t have had to wait 49 years to celebrate (millions of people would be alive today)!"

Sen. Rick Brattin (Republican for U.S. House, District 4): "The Supreme Court has at long last ended one of its greatest injustices, Roe v. Wade, and because of the trigger law that I helped to pass all elective abortions in the state of Missouri will end. While this is a strong victory for the right to life, I know that liberals will now try to make abortions available nationwide, and in Congress I will fight to ensure this barbaric practice comes to an end. We have to end abortion in this nation and protect the rights of the unborn."

Kalena Bruce (Republican for U.S. House, District 4): "Today's Supreme Court decision is a major victory in the pursuit to protect life. But our work remains. While Missouri is a leader in the pro-life movement, states like Illinois recorded 46,000 abortions in 2020. I will never waiver in defense of our most vulnerable; innocent life still needs protecting."

Missouri Democratic Party and Missouri House Democratic Campaign Committee: "Missourians know what’s best for them and their families, and today that has been stripped away from them. Today, the Supreme Court has ruled that Republicans can steal the right of survivors of rape and incest to determine what is best for them. Republicans will not stop with abortion. They will continue to strip away access to birth control and contraception, in vitro fertilization, and same-sex marriage."

Galen Bacharier covers Missouri politics & government for the News-Leader. Contact him at gbacharier@news-leader.com, (573) 219-7440 or on Twitter @galenbacharier.

This article originally appeared on Springfield News-Leader: Missouri reacts to Supreme Court overturn of Roe v. Wade, abortion ban