What has the pro-life movement won?

But the anti-abortion cause is closely linked to a culturally bunkered Republican Party and a weakened religious right, it has few media megaphones and weak financial backing, and a lot of the country just seems not to want to think too much about abortion and to punish the party that forces it to do so. So it’s extremely easy to imagine the end of Roe leading to a little more state regulation over all (mostly limitations in the second trimester, along the lines of many European countries), but then for the few states that go further to find themselves boycotted and besieged, leaving the goal of ending abortion nationwide as far away as ever.

Especially because the plausibility of that goal depends on whether the pro-life movement can prove — through very literal policy demonstrations, not just rhetoric — that it can protect and support the pregnant women who would no longer get abortions in the world that it desires. The pro-choice side insists that these women’s independence and well-being and equality depends on a right to end a life that, were it wanted, would be called by name and celebrated with ultrasound photos on the fridge. Against that argument the anti-abortion movement needs more than just the ultrasound photo: It needs to prove the pro-choice premise wrong.

The movement’s wiser leaders know this.