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Rep. McMorris Rodgers ‘hopeful’ modern science will sway public opinion against abortion

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Washington Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers told Fox News Wednesday she is “hopeful” modern developments in science and technology will help turn public opinion on abortion.

“I am hopeful that as people really consider the science, the research, the technology, that more and more are going to review their position on this question,” she said in answer to whether she believes the majority of Americans support overturning Roe v. Wade. “It’s the sharpest soul-searching question before us as a nation.”

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) 
(Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

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The congresswoman’s comments came just hours after the Supreme Court heard arguments on the constitutionality of a 2018 Mississippi law that banned abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

Proponents of abortion rights argue the law infringes on protections granted under the 1973 Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade that federally secured a women’s right to an abortion.

“We are not in the same place today as we were in 1973 when Roe v. Wade was decided,” McMorris Rodgers told Fox News. “Today, because of technology, we can look into the womb, we can see the baby day by day, week by week.”

U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA)

U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA)
(Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

Two-thirds of voters said they want to keep Roe v. Wade intact, according to a September Fox News poll.

The 65% of poll takers opposed to overturning the 1973 landmark decision was a record in Fox News polling, up from 61% in October 2020 and barely eclipsing the previous high of 64% in June 2019.

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But tough questioning by the predominately conservative high court justices could spell trouble for those who oppose not only Mississippi abortion limits, but Roe v. Wade as a whole. 

Republicans championed Wednesday’s oral arguments.

“I am encouraged,” McMorris Rodgers, mother of three, told Fox News. “I hope that the court stands for life.”

The Washington Republican said the issue strikes home for her as her oldest child, Cole, was born with Down syndrome.

“It was tough when we got that diagnosis,” she said. “A team basically gave us a long list of potential challenges and struggles we would have. 

“And yet today I cannot imagine life without Cole, and I believe from the bottom of my heart that his life is worth living,” she added. 

Anti-abortion rights activists protest outside the Supreme Court building ahead of arguments in the Mississippi abortion rights case Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health, in Washington, Dec. 1, 2021. 

Anti-abortion rights activists protest outside the Supreme Court building ahead of arguments in the Mississippi abortion rights case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, in Washington, Dec. 1, 2021. 
(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

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McMorris Rodgers explained that children diagnosed with Down syndrome are living longer with life expectancies of up to 60 years, nearly triple what the life expectancy was believed to be just a few decades ago. 

“Science has evolved, and my hope is that we learn from this, and we will reject abortion,” she told Fox News.  “Abortion doesn’t reflect the latest research or modern medicine and it’s not in alignment with American values of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all.”

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