New reporting reveals that Chief Justice John Roberts was working on a compromise to save abortion rights, but the leaked Roe draft opinion stonewalled his efforts.
Video of a CNN report:
New CNN reporting from @JoanBiskupic: Chief Justice John Roberts privately lobbied his fellow conservative justices to preserve Roe v. Wade – but the unprecedented leak of the draft opinion may have doomed his efforts. pic.twitter.com/g0fKkIT14f
— CNN This Morning (@CNNThisMorning) July 26, 2022
He was trying week after week after the initial vote in December after oral arguments at which five justices far on the right voted to overturn Roe, Roberts was alone in the middle wanting to uphold the ban on abortions but not go farther
than Roe, but of course, you have the three liberals saying we don’t want to do any of this, we don’t want to disrupt abortion rights at all. Roberts keeps trying. And it’s interesting, not only did his work affect his efforts towards the two newest justices, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett, but it had an effect on the others.
The hard-right justices became concerned that he could be. And he was able to pick off justices on the far conservative side for more of a moderate conservative centrist. So they became anxious what he was up to.
And the liberals who had such a defeat this session, starting to have hopes that maybe Roe would not be overturned completely. But then on May 2nd, when the draft of the opinion was released and everything went public, it made John Roberts’ efforts all the harder because he’s a man who likes to work privately, in secret, offering some concessions himself. Seeking concessions for some sort of, as I say, cross-ideological compromise. It went down to the wire, according to my sources, but in the end, he made no headwind.
The Supreme Court Leaker Was A Conservative Who Was Trying To Stop Roberts From Saving Abortion Rights
It is now clear which side leaked the Roe draft and why. The far-right justices were worried that Chief Justice Roberts was going to be successful in crafting a compromise that would have saved Roe, so they leaked the draft to lock all of the conservative votes.
Roberts only needed one more conservative justice to come along with him to save Roe, and the Alito/Thomas faction was worried that he would be successful, so they leaked the draft to stop his efforts.
Ted Cruz swore that the leak came from a liberal when it was always a conservative leaker that made the most sense.
Conservatives will violate laws, rules, or norms to impose their unpopular and unwanted agenda on the American people.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association