Voting in primaries is more crucial than ever.
Michelle Obama spoke out on reproductive rights on Saturday in a new post on Instagram that certainly comes at a pivotal time for the pro-choice movement. On May 2 Politico published a leaked draft of the Supreme Court’s ruling in the abortion rights case, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, suggesting the court will fully overturn landmark abortion rights case Roe v. Wade, which allowed a national right to access abortion. On May 14, Michelle Obama took the time to spell out a next-steps plan if SCOTUS does overturns Roe v. Wade on Instagram, urging people to vote in the primaries.
On Saturday, May 14, Obama addressed the nationwide reaction in the past month to the Supreme’s Court’s unreleased draft of the pivotal abortions rights case. “It’s been a tough couple of weeks since we saw the leaked SCOTUS draft opinion on abortion,” Obama wrote on Instagram. “If it comes to pass, we may soon live in a country where millions of women — not to mention our children and grandchildren — lose the right to make decisions about their bodies and their health.”
Obama then continued on with a motivational message to her followers about making your voice heard. “We don’t have to stand idly by while others try to turn back the clock on progress,” she said. Obama also added that she was “so inspired by everyone out marching” during the nationwide abortion rights protests on Saturday, and that she’s looking forward to seeing abortion rights supporters “carrying this energy forward to the elections in November and in every election after that.”
The post came the same day that hundreds of thousands of people gathered in Washington, D.C., and in cities across the country for the Bans Off Our Bodies protests to rally for abortion rights in response to the leaked draft by the Supreme Court. While Chief Justice John Roberts confirmed the leaked decision draft was real, he said it was not the court’s final ruling. However, it remains to be seen whether a final ruling will reflect a different vote, or just different wording. The official decision in the case is expected in late June or early July.
Meanwhile, congressional lawmakers have attempted action to codify abortion rights, no matter what the Supreme Court does: On May 11, the Senate voted on the Women’s Health Protection Act, a piece of legislation that would affirm the right to an abortion nationwide. It failed 49-51.
Though Obama admitted that some people may be wondering "whether or not [their] vote matters," she reminded her followers that "state lawmakers are the ones who will determine whether abortion is safe, legal, and accessible in your communities."