Expert answers viewer question on SCOTUS Roe v. Wade reversal

U.S.

(NewsNation) — After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, some Americans have questioned the court’s role and what it can and cannot do.

Dr. Laura McNeal, a legal analyst and law professor, answered a viewer’s question regarding the the court during an appearance on “Morning in America.”

Q: Women can now serve in combat roles in the United States military or as police officers or firefighters. Can the Supreme Court overturn the laws that gave women the right to do that?

McNeal: No, the Supreme Court cannot overturn those rules. One thing about our Constitution is we have the equal protection clause that ensures that no one is discriminated (against), when it works like it’s supposed to, because of their gender. And so the Supreme Court does not have a legal basis to overturn any of those things with respect to women in either combat positions or, as he mentioned, firefighters or police officers,

Q: The word “opinion,” it’s a legal term, but everyday people might be hearing that and think this is based on the justices’ personal opinions. But each and every case they rule on, they actually have to take precedent into consideration, and they have to have a true legal argument. So for all of these cases, they’re going by the book, right?

Yes, that’s absolutely correct. When we hear a legal opinion, I always tell my law students, it just means the court’s collective decision on a particular legal issue. So it says opinion, but it’s really their interpretation of the law. And they are supposed to rely on precedent, meaning what has the Supreme Court ruled on in the past? And that’s why this Roe v. Wade reversal is so ground-shaking, to not only the legal field but the society in general, because it is making people uneasy thinking what’s next.

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