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Federal Court Dismisses Roe v Wade Lawsuit, Supreme Court Intervention Expected

A three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans dismissed McCorvey's suit against Dallas County District Attorney Bill Hill
( [email protected] ) Sep 16, 2004 09:41 PM EDT

On Tuesday, Sept. 14, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a lawsuit seeking to overtun the 1973 U.S Supreme Court decision known as “the Roe versus Wade decision” that legalized abortion. The case is being brought by former plaintiff Norma McCorvey of Dallas, who challenged Texas’ abortion ban more than three decades ago.

In 1970, Norma McCorvey filed a lawsuit, asking the court to strike down laws that prohibited her from obtaining an abortion. At the time, McCorvey used the pseudonym Jane Roe. The case, of course, was Roe v. Wade - and its holding was that women have a constitutional right to choose to terminate their pregnancies through abortion. The ruling, which was approved by the Supreme Court, consequently led to the legalization of abortion in all 50 states.


Over the years, McCorvey has revealed that she is the person behind the Roe v. Wade decision and that she has changed her views on the issue of abortion. McCorvey, who is now an anti-abortion activist, claimed that new scientific and legal developments undermined the Roe v. Wade decision’s validity. She contended that the case should be heard again in light of evidence that abortion cause women long-term emotional harm.

However, a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans dismissed her suit against Dallas County District Attorney Bill Hill, reasoning that there has been no Texas state abortion law for more than 30 years.

An attorney for McCorvey told The Associated Press that an appeal will be filed over the court’s rejection to reopen the case.

"We've always known that this case will be ultimately decided by the Supreme Court," he said. "We will be successful at Supreme Court level."