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Roe v. Wade at stake as 116th Congress convenes?

When Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was first nominated, an alarm was sounded that grew louder and louder over the four months leading up to the midterm elections.

The warnings came from abortion rights groups, who saw the longstanding Supreme Court ruling that ensures a woman’s right to an abortion at risk of being overturned, or, what some saw as worse, quietly gutted.

(MORE: Supreme Court ‘will nullify’ Roe v. Wade even if it doesn’t ‘overturn’ it: Senate Dem)

“There’s no way to sugarcoat it,” Dawn Laguens, the former executive vice president of Planned Parenthood who stepped down in November, said when Kavanaugh was nominated by the president in July. “The constitutional right to access safe, legal abortion in this country is on the line.”

And what abortion rights groups saw as a threat, anti-abortion groups saw as an opportunity — the best judicial climate in years.

“Indeed, this administration is not only shifting the Supreme Court, but the lower courts as well,” said former Rep. Marilyn Musgrave, R-Colorado, who currently works with the Susan B. Anthony List, a nationwide anti-abortion group that focuses on elections and policy, as the vice president of government affairs.

As Congress reconvenes for the 116th session, half-a-year after Kavanaugh’s nomination and two months after the 2018 midterms, the nation has seen political shake-ups across branches of government that are likely to bring changes to abortion legislation and, potentially, the look of Roe v. Wade.

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