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Mitch McConnell says U.S. abortion ban 'possible' if Roe v. Wade overturned

He said federal and state governments could restrict abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned.

Published: May 8, 2022 4:19pm

Updated: May 8, 2022 5:34pm

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said a nationwide abortion ban is "possible" if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade following the leaked draft indicating the justices are likely to do so.

McConnell discussed the possibility of state and federal abortion bans during an interview with USA Today on Friday, but he noted that such legislation is premature.

"All of this puts the cart before the horse," he said.

When asked about a national abortion ban, McConnell said, "If the leaked opinion became the final opinion, legislative bodies – not only at the state level but at the federal level – certainly could legislate in that area."

His comments come after Politico published Justice Samuel Alito's leaked draft opinion last week suggeting that the Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade.

"The Constitution does not prohibit the citizens of each state from regulating or prohibiting abortion. Roe and Casey regulated that authority. We now overrule those decisions and return that authority to the people and their elected representatives," the apparent majority of justices wrote in the opinion.

McConnell told USA Today that "if this were the final decision, that was the point that it should be resolved one way or another in the legislative process. So yeah, it's possible."

He also pointed to the pro-life stance of Senate Republicans.

"With regard to the abortion issue, I think it's pretty clear where Senate Republicans stand," McConnell observed. "And if and when the court makes a final decision, I expect everybody will be more definitive. But I don't think it's much secret where Senate Republicans stand on that issue."

The Kentucky Republican previously called for the leak to be investigated and said that "the Department of Justice must pursue criminal charges if applicable."

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