Governor Youngkin, AG Miyares sign on to back Mississippi’s position before SCOTUS.
Following the inauguration of new Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin and the swearing in of new Republican Attorney General Jason Miyares in Virginia, the state has reversed its position in the Mississippi 15-week abortion case being considered by the U.S. Supreme Court and has now filed in support of Mississippi’s position.
On Monday, the Washington Examiner reported that Virginia Solicitor General Andrew Ferguson sent a letter to the Supreme Court citing a “change in Administration” and backing the argument that the U.S. Constitution is silent on abortion and thus should be left to the states to decide how to regulate it.
“Virginia is now of the view that the Constitution is silent on the question of abortion, and that it is therefore up to the people in the several States to determine the legal status and regulatory treatment of abortion,” Solicitor General Ferguson wrote on Friday.
Ferguson told the Court that the state no longer adheres to the arguments contained in their previous brief.
Virginia is now urging the Court to get out of the area of abortion, echoing the words of former Justice Antonin Scalia.
“Abortion is one of the most hotly contested political questions of our day. That debate has not been improved by the Court’s constitutionalization of the issue in Roe, nor by its jurisprudence since,” the Viriginia letter notes, adding, “Justice Scalia’s advice that the Court ‘should get out of this area, where [it] ha[s] no right to be, and where [it] do[es] neither [it]sel[f] nor the country any good by remaining,’ has only improved with age.”
Former Viriginia Democratic Attorney General Mark Herring had previously signed on to a brief with 24 state attorneys general to urge the Court to uphold Roe v. Wade.
The new declared position by Virginia was welcome news to Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves and Attorney General Lynn Fitch. Both have been vocal advocates for the pro-life position and states’ rights in the area of abortion regulation.
Governor Reeves told Y’all Politics he appreciated his colleague’s support in the case as they fight to protect the unborn.
“Mississippi appreciates the support of Virginia’s newly elected Governor Glenn Youngkin by recognizing the importance of this case in the Supreme Court,” Governor Reeves said late Monday. “It is important now more than ever, that we stand united to protect the rights of those who cannot protect themselves.”
Attorney General Fitch thanked her new counterpart in Virginia for his letter joining the coalition of states and pro-life organizations seeking to uphold Mississippi’s right to “empower women and promote life.” Her office defended the state’s 15-week abortion ban before the Court in December.
“We are so thankful for the thoughtful arguments General Miyares and his office presented to the Supreme Court in their letter joining our coalition in Dobbs v JWHO. Nearly 80 amicus briefs, representing a wide variety of legal, ethical, scientific, medical, and political views, were filed with the Court in support of our position,” AG Fitch told Y’all Politics Monday afternoon.
Fitch said “it is well past time” to overturn Roe and Casey.
“Virginia’s letter demonstrates the power of our message that we can empower women and promote life,” AG Fitch added. “It is time for the Court to free the people and their elected leaders to do both.”
A ruling from the Court could come in early summer 2022.
You can read the full letter to the U.S. Supreme Court from the new Republican Virginia Administration here or below.