Over at the The New Republic Online, Ethan Leib takes a look at Alito’s abortion decisions. An excerpt, discussing Alito’s dissent in Casey:
. . . Alito’s dissent was not ideological and did not show any disrespect to governing Supreme Court abortion precedent. On the contrary, Alito’s analysis was a careful application of the framework laid out by Justice O’Connor in her many opinions on the subject. It was also relatively mainstream: Opinion polls then and now show that 60 to 70 percent of Americans generally favor spousal notification provisions. Moreover, the notification provision at issue in Casey was narrowly drawn. It did not apply to unmarried women, it provided for many exceptions, and it required only that a woman sign a statement attesting that she had complied with the law. What’s more, in his dissent, Alito presumed that 95 percent of married women do notify their spouses if they have an abortion; and no one was able to show that the other 5 percent wouldn’t fall within the statute’s many exceptions. In short, Alito’s opinion was careful, modest, pragmatic, and reached a fairly mainstream result. This was hardly the work of an anti-Roe firebrand.