On June 24, 2022, the US Supreme Court decided in Dobbs vs. Jackson Women's Health Organization (597 U.S. (2022)) to overturn the constitutional right to abortion, a seismic shift in abortion policy that makes the states key battlegrounds in fights over abortion and broader reproductive rights. This article focuses on the role of state supreme courts in setting state abortion policies. Using an original data set of state court decisions surrounding abortion from the past 20 years, the authors investigate how two overarching factors affect state supreme court decision-making on abortion. First, they track how states' political environments affect the decisions courts make about access to abortion. Second, the authors consider the scope of the abortion policy considered by the courts. The authors find that the partisan makeup of state legislatures does not influence the direction of state supreme courts' rulings on abortion issues, but it does affect the scope of abortion regulation being considered by the courts. Additionally, they find that elected judges tend to be more responsive to constituent preferences when ruling on abortion policies. Overall, these findings illustrate the multifaceted dynamics involved in state supreme courts' rulings on abortion.

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