Why pro-abortion groups flipped on the filibuster

The first reason that NARAL and EMILY’s List flipped is that single-issue groups on both the right and the left are generally getting caught up in issues beyond their own mission. Stephen Gutowski, the author of The Reload newsletter, notes: “So many single-issue groups are just becoming general liberal or conservative groups. The ACLU is for gun control. Planned Parenthood is for a pathway to citizenship. The NRA is for border security. [Gun Owners of America] is against vaccine mandates.” You can chalk this trend up to America’s increasing political polarization and to the fact that many supposedly single-issue groups now share members and donors.

The second reason for the shift is that Democratic activists and donors see that the Supreme Court is likely to either overturn or pare back Roe, and they want to respond to such a ruling with legislation — the misleadingly named Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA) — that would enshrine in federal law a sweeping nationwide right to abortion through all nine months of pregnancy. “We can’t count on Trump’s conservative Supreme Court to uphold Roe v. Wade. It’s time to end the filibuster and pass the Women’s Health Protection Act,” Representative Pramila Jayapal, the chairwoman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, tweeted on Friday.

The Democrats’ radical abortion bill does not currently have sufficient support to pass in the Senate. Pro-life Democrat Joe Manchin opposes it. Bob Casey Jr. of Pennsylvania hasn’t yet backed it, either, and Casey’s past vote for a 20-week national abortion ban would seem to suggest that won’t change. Susan Collins of Maine, one of two Senate Republicans who support Roe, says the WHPA is too extreme and goes far beyond Roe. The other GOP senator who supports Roe, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, has not taken a position on the WHPA.