Senate Democrats’ effort to codify Roe v. Wade into federal law failed Wednesday.
An unprecedented leak of a draft opinion from the Supreme Court last week suggested that the court may soon strike down its own 1973 decision in Roe that legalized abortion nationwide. In response, Senate Democrats brought legislation to the floor they said would codify the standard set by the decision into federal law.
But the effort was doomed from the start, as they did not have the votes to meet the 60-vote filibuster threshold to clear a procedural vote to advance the bill. Critics of the bill said the legislation would not have simply codified Roe but would go beyond what Roe currently permits by overriding nearly every state-level abortion restriction, including those that have been held up by courts with Roe intact.