How overturn of Roe v. Wade could transform Pennsylvania's political landscape

"There are lots of things to worry about," said Kim Mutcherson, co-dean and professor of law at Rutgers Law School.

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ByJaclyn Lee via WPVI logo
Tuesday, June 28, 2022
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"There are lots of things to worry about," said Kim Mutcherson, co-dean and professor of law at Rutgers Law School. "There are questions about medication abortion, about shipping pills across state lines."

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Last week's landmark Supreme Court ruling that overturned Roe v. Wade instantly had a chilling effect on women like Michelle Cimillo.

Cimillo said she absolutely plans on voting in November.

"I'm very disturbed by the state of the world right now, and I think it's extremely important that everybody step up to the plate and vote for their belief for their rights," said Cimillo of Rittenhouse.

Law experts say the Supreme Court ruling now gives states all the power, and with Pennsylvania as a purple state, the court landscape has entered uncharted territory.

"There are lots of things to worry about," said Kim Mutcherson, co-dean and professor of law at Rutgers Law School. "There are questions about medication abortion, about shipping pills across state lines. There are questions about our right to travel and can you leave your state and have an abortion elsewhere?"

SEE ALSO: How does overturning Roe v. Wade impact women in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware?

In Pennsylvania, abortion is still legal because of Democratic Governor Tom Wolf, who has vetoed legislation from the Republican legislature seeking to severely restrict abortion rights in the Keystone State. All that is on the ballot this November, with the gubernatorial election and U.S. Senate election.

"As a midterm election, we are at a crucial point in American political history and which direction the country is going to go," said Dr. John Kennedy, professor of political science at West Chester University. "And with the election only a few months away, there's no doubt this country has become more polarized, more sharply divided, and that is only going to ratchet up the intensity."

Planned Parenthood Southeastern Pennsylvania said the Supreme Court's ruling will result in a surge of patients from other states into Pennsylvania.

"Abortion is already something that is not accessible for a lot of Pennsylvanians," Lindsey Mauldin, vice president of Public Policy and Advocacy for Planned Parenthood Southeastern PA. "I think over 80% of our counties are without an abortion provider, already we only have 17 providers across the Commonwealth. So bringing in an influx of patients from other states will just make it a little harder for patients who are already having trouble accessing this important service to access it now."

SEE ALSO: Which states are banning abortion immediately? State-by-state breakdown of abortion laws, bans