Clarence Thomas Wants To 'Reconsider' Gay Marriage, Birth Control Rulings

By Bill Galluccio

June 24, 2022

Supreme Court Justices Pose For Formal Group Photo
Photo: Getty Images

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas suggested that the High Court should "reconsider" previous decisions that protect the right to same-sex marriage, same-sex relationships, and buying contraceptives.

In a concurring opinion in the ruling that overturned Roe v. Wade, Thomas wrote that the Supreme Court "should reconsider all of this Court's substantive due process precedents, including GriswoldLawrence, and Obergefell."

"Because any substantive due process decision is 'demonstrably erroneous,'" Thomas wrote, "we have a duty to 'correct the error' established in those precedents."

He went on to suggest that the Court could reexamine numerous other rulings.

"After overruling these demonstrably erroneous decisions, the question would remain whether other constitutional provisions guarantee the myriad rights that our substantive due process cases have generated. For example, we could consider whether any of the rights announced in this Court's substantive due process cases are "privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States" protected by the Fourteenth Amendment."

Despite the claims made in Thomas' concurring opinion, other Justices noted that their ruling has nothing to do with other precedents unrelated to abortion.

"None of the other decisions cited by Roe and Casey involved the critical moral question posed by abortion. They are therefore inapposite. They do not support the right to obtain an abortion, and by the same token, our conclusion that the Constitution does not confer such a right does not undermine them in any way," Justice Samuel Alito wrote. "Our decision concerns the constitutional right to abortion and no other right. Nothing in this opinion should be understood to cast doubt on precedents that do not concern abortion."

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