Abortion rights rallies taking place coast-to-coast

FiveThirtyEight Senior Writer Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux discusses the escalating abortion ban controversy.
4:46 | 05/21/19

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Transcript for Abortion rights rallies taking place coast-to-coast
Moving on out of the day of protests around the country over those abortion restrictions that have surfaced in a bunch of state courts in recent weeks take a look. You can see here from the steps of the Supreme Court to city halls and state capitals in the midwest south. To the West Coast women raising their voices today as conservative states and those anti abortion activists. Push ahead. It was are quite a spirited day out there on the steps of the Supreme Court were team is covering. But what does all of this mean is is there really a big movement afoot right now. And why now our friends at 538. I have been tracking this taking a closer look at which states are passing. I some of these restrictions and why they're doing so our friend Emilia Thompson devote joins us now from Chicago via Skype or merely it's great to see you. So this you know you you pointed out in your new column today that this push for abortion rights obviously didn't come out of I don't know where but we have seen. A more sudden move towards outright abortion bans why is that what is your research told you. Several did is we have looked at then bigger trajectory of abortion restrictions over the past eight years because there's been a real acceleration. Restrictions on abortion. In net Conrad leaning states and its twenty Iraq and and what we've seen is there have been hundreds of restrictions passed on in and number and a number of different types of restrictions. But as you noted. They are our they're getting earlier. And they're getting more directly targeted at Roe vs. Wade solo he would see before. Our restrictions that are really regulations. On abortion. And they have the effect at making a portion harder to get. But they're not attacking the constitutional right to abortion directly. This shift we're seeing now is that. We're now seeing these new bands on abortion in the first trimester that are much more direct challenge to the legality of the procedure itself. It has public opinion though shifted. You know it's it's it's it's sort of give a ground swell to these movements or is this do. Really something that is. Opportunistic if you will given the politics of the day the politics of the court where where is public opinion stand on on those are right bands. The few national polls. And you see your real division in public opinion in terms of whether people are in favor of restrictions on a portion. Earlier or in leader in pregnancy so. It's there's that there's a fairly I'm substantial consensus around 60% of the general public. Wants abortion to be legal in the first trimester and that support falls off in the second trimester. So some of the earlier bands that we've seen that had been sort of more consistent since it's funny eleven. Fans on abortion around. -- need 22 weeks of pregnancy. I'm those have been more popular then that's something like a first trimester abortion ban which really isn't in line with public opinion. We your team also. A stupidly points out Emilia that. Many legal experts actually think a lot of these hardline bands. Might not play so well the Supreme Court right it might actually. Make the court less likely to take up some of these issues and waited to this fight. Yeah good pretty big risk here because the Supreme Court has five justice conservative majority as I have last fall for the first time in a long time so that would seem to give an opening. To folks who want to bring cases to the Supreme Court that would restrict abortion. The problem is that the Chief Justice John Roberts is very sensitive to the court not hearing political. And there is you know a very established precedent that there is a constitutional right to fortune. And so the concern from some legal experts I spoke when it. Is that I'm you know essentially. Abortion opponents may be asking for too much too quickly that the court might eat more receptive to a case that's about some of these restrictions. And then something that would overturn Roe vs. Wade entirely. Especially in an election year if the affected these bands is that the issue becomes more politicize. 1622 when he candidates talking about that's a lot. So the more this sort of becomes part of the political atmosphere. I'm the period that it it mighty I am making it less appealing for the Supreme Court to waiting to that's right now. Fascinating set watch EC on Tuesday when the court convenes again whether or not they will. Take up some of those cases that have been in the pipeline and we know there's been some petitions pending Sobel stay tuned for that Emilia Thompson broke from my. 538 thanks so much for analysis and their Avery to see you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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