“I believe that Senator Collins is as responsible for Brett Kavanaugh’s ruling as he is.”


Today, the Maine Democratic Party was joined by experts in the medical and legal fields to discuss what Brett Kavanaugh’s anti-choice dissent in the June Medical case means for the future of abortion rights across the country. Senator Susan Collins justified her decision to confirm Kavanuagh on the basis that he would follow precedent with respect to reproductive rights, but his dissent proved that was false.


While the majority of justices delivered a narrow victory for reproductive rights today, the anti-choice justices that Senator Collins has helped to install throughout the federal judiciary continue to pose a threat to the right to choose as we know it.


You can watch a recording of the full event here or read excerpts from the participants below:


Maine Democratic Party Chair Kathleen Marra:


“Kavanaugh’s dissent today represents a complete departure from the precedent set by Whole Women’s Health. Nothing about the facts, the law, or the constitution has changed since the court ruled in favor of reproductive rights four years ago. The only explanation for Brett Kavanaugh’s dissent is that he in fact has no regard for precedent when it comes to reproductive rights.”


Dr. Julia McDonald, full spectrum family medicine physician practicing in Central Maine and Medical Director of a local abortion clinic:


“I believe that Senator Collins is as responsible for Brett Kavanaugh’s ruling as he is.”


“While we’re thrilled that the majority of the court’s justices ruled to uphold reproductive rights today, Kavanaugh’s dissenting opinion is a chilling reminder that the anti-choice justices that Collins helped put on the court will pose a threat to the right to choose for years to come.”


Anthony Moffa, Associate Professor of Law, University of Maine School of Law:


“If we were looking for a justice that tried to embrace the precedent and did so in a seemingly honest discussion of what that precedent is, I think Chief Justice Roberts focuses quite heavily, he’s the fifth vote here to strike this law down, and indeed his opinion is almost entirely couched in this language of respect for precedent. We find almost none of that same language in Justice Kavanaugh’s dissent.”


“Justice Kavanaugh, and perhaps even Justice Roberts, reading his opinion today, would have us go back to a world where we weren’t even looking at the benefits of these laws as part of the equation, and we were looking explicitly, only at whether there was a substantial obstacle [to abortion]. Why that is potentially dangerous is because we can frame many things, many of the impositions as an obstacle that is less than substantial.”