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Good morning, Free Press subscribers,
Opinion columnist Nancy Kaffer here.
I’m normally pretty thrilled when the folks in charge ask me to write for this newsletter. Subscribers, you are my people, and I love getting the chance to share the week’s most exciting stories with you.
This week is different.
On Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling we all suspected was coming. In a 6-3 decision driven by its conservative majority, the court overturned Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that declared state laws barring access to abortion unconstitutional.
This is an inflection point in U.S. history. Within a month, abortion will be illegal in 13 states. Seven more states are poised to ban abortion. And in some states, the fate of abortion rights is uncertain.
Michigan is one of them.
This gets a little complicated, so stay with me. A 1931 Michigan law that’s still on the books makes abortion a felony punishable by four years in prison. Roe v. Wade rendered that law unenforceable. It’s been 49 years, but state lawmakers never got around to repealing it. But abortion is still legal in Michigan, thanks to a pair of lawsuits filed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Planned Parenthood of Michigan, asking state courts to find that the 1931 law violates the state constitution. Last month, a state judge granted Planned Parenthood of Michigan a temporary restraining order barring enforcement of the law pending the outcome of the lawsuit.
This is the kind of breaking news, explanation and analysis our team brought you this week.
Here’s Washington D.C. bureau reporter Todd Spangler’s recap of the decision; analysis of the immediate impact for Michigan by Lansing reporter Dave Boucher and Grand Rapids reporter Arpan Lobo; reactions from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Attorney General Dana Nessel, both pro-choice Democrats seeking re-election this year, and President Joe Biden; an update on a petition drive to put an amendment to the state constitution guaranteeing access not just to abortion but to birth control on the fall ballot; and our editorial call to action.
We’re going to stay on this story, and we promise to bring you all the latest news, and what it means for you.
I’m so grateful to you for believing in the Free Press, and that’s what your subscription is — affirmation that our journalism is important to you, and that you want to be a part of making it happen.
Have a wonderful week, and let’s hope for better news in the days ahead.
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This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: This week is different