Roe v. Wade Leak Scrambles November Election

by Greg Valliere, AGF Management Ltd.

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Insights and Market Perspectives

IN A BOMBSHELL THAT SHOOK THIS CITY during the night, the Supreme Court has apparently reached a consensus to overturn Roe v. Wade — setting the stage for an epic controversy that could scramble the November elections.

DEMOCRATS HAD BEEN BRACING for steep House losses this fall, but suddenly they have an issue that could energize their base. Roughly 60% of Americans support some types of abortion rights.

BUT THE COURT’S CONSERVATIVE MAJORITY apparently agrees with the author of the opinion, Justice Samuel Alito, who said in a leaked opinion that “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start. Its reasoning was exceptionally weak, and the decision has had damaging consequences.”

REPUBLICANS WE TALKED WITH LATE LAST NIGHT insisted that this stunning development actually could help them. This is an enormous issue within the GOP base. But the prospect of a nationwide ban — unthinkable just a few years ago — will galvanize voters in states like Wisconsin, where anti-abortion Sen. Ron Johnson (R) now has an unwelcome complication to his re-election bid.

THIS COUNTRY ALREADY WAS BITTERLY DIVIDED over Covid restrictions, what’s taught to kids in schools, illegal immigration, etc. — but this pending abortion fight will eclipse all other issues. Democrats must be grateful for a topic that will divert attention away from inflation and the volatile markets.

THE KEY ISSUE, WE BELIEVE, is whether anti-abortion activists will seek a total ban on the procedure or a ban when a heartbeat can be detected. Other issues — including bans even in cases of rape or incest — undoubtedly will be emotionally debated. And the availability of a “morning after” pill will become crucial.

BOTTOM LINE: This could lead to a ferocious push-back from women who feel that their rights will be violated. Huge demonstrations in major cities are inevitable. If Republicans over-play their hand, the November election could become a referendum on abortion — which, polls indicate, would not help the GOP.

FOR NOW we still think the House will flip to the Republicans, but perhaps not in a blowout, with the Senate a bit more likely to stay under narrow Democratic control. It will take several days or weeks for a consensus to form on how strict a ban might be, but one conclusion appears to be inescapable: anti-abortion forces clearly have the upper hand in the Supreme Court.

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of AGF, its subsidiaries or any of its affiliated companies, funds or investment strategies.

The views expressed in this blog are provided as a general source of information based on information available as of the date of publication and should not be considered as personal investment advice or an offer or solicitation to buy and/or sell securities. Speculation or stated believes about future events, such as market or economic conditions, company or security performance, or other projections represent the beliefs of the author and do not necessarily represent the view of AGF, its subsidiaries or any of its affiliated companies, funds or investment strategies. Every effort has been made to ensure accuracy in these commentaries at the time of publication; however, accuracy cannot be guaranteed. Market conditions may change and AGF accepts no responsibility for individual investment decisions arising from the use of or reliance on the information contained herein. Any financial projections are based on the opinions of the author and should not be considered as a forecast. The forward looking statements and opinions may be affected by changing economic circumstances and are subject to a number of uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in the forward looking statements. The information contained in this commentary is designed to provide you with general information related to the political and economic environment in the United States. It is not intended to be comprehensive investment advice applicable to the circumstances of the individual.

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This post was first published at the AGF Perspectives Blog.

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