Sarah Weddington of Roe v. Wade Fame passes away at the age of 76

Sarah Weddington, the attorney who won Roe v. Wade, talks to KPBS about the landmark case in 2012.

Sarah Weddington, Texas attorney who argued and won the landmark abortion case Roe v. Wade, died on Sunday night, aged 76.

Weddington, the daughter of a Methodist minister, was only 26 years old in 1971 when she argued Roe before the Supreme Court of the United States. Representative Weddington Norma McCorvey, known only at the time as “Jane Roe“In the petition. Weddington remains one of the youngest people ever to argue before the supreme court.

The new lawyer also has her own private connection against McCorvey’s lawsuit seeking to establish the right to abortion as a constitutional right. When Weddington was a law student, she tried to abort an unwanted pregnancy. Because abortion was illegal in Texas at the time, Weddington went to Mexico to have an abortion. In her 1992 memoir, “A question of choice,”Weddington credits her ability to complete law school without being derailed by an unwanted pregnancy and that she was able to terminate her own pregnancy. Weddington’s account of abortion’s role in her own legal career mirrors what hundreds of attorneys detailed in 2019 concise amicus challenge Louisiana’s restrictive abortion laws.

Weddington challenged Texas’ abortion law in district court before going to the US Supreme Court twice. She sued Henry Wade, the Dallas district attorney responsible for enforcing anti-abortion laws in Texas. Weddington’s arguments culminated in the watershed 7-2 decision establishing the right to abortion as a constitutional guarantee.

After her victory in Roe, Weddington served in the Texas House of Representatives from 1973 to 1977. She then served as an adviser on women’s affairs to the then President. Jimmy Carter’s management. She is also a professor at the University of Texas, founder of the Weddington Center, and a monthly columnist with Glamor magazine from 1981 to 1983.

Although Weddington will continue to be known for “winning” Roe v. Wade, she often refused to take credit only, writing in her memoirs, “Nobody won Roe v. Wade. “Weddington’s death comes as Texas’ latest restrictive abortion law is being enacted challenges at the Supreme Court.

[screengrab via KPBS Public Media]

Is there a trick we should know? [email protected] Sarah Weddington of Roe v. Wade Fame passes away at the age of 76

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