The United States court system has three levels: the trial court level or district courts; the appellate courts; and the United States Supreme Court. A case is first heard in a district court and can then be appealed to an appellate court. If either party is dissatisfied with the outcome, a case can be appealed to the Supreme Court.
Individual states also have court systems which consist of a trial court, an appellate court, and a state supreme court. The Supreme Court hears appeals from state supreme courts when the matter concerns a federal law or the Constitution.
The Supreme Court has nine justices who are appointed for life, including a Chief Justice who leads the Court. Supreme Court justices are chosen by the President, and then approved by the Senate. A simple majority vote is necessary to approve a nomination to the Supreme Court.
The battle to keep abortion legal is not just about saving Roe v. Wade, but ensuring that the promise of choice in Roe will remain available and free of unnecessary barriers. The Supreme Court has allowed many restrictions on abortion including a restriction on abortion counseling in federally funded clinics as well as many other unfounded restrictions. More
Justice Scalia has consistently voted against the protections of Roe and has likened abortion to sodomy, polygamy, incest, and suicide. In his dissent to Planned Parenthood of Souteastern Pennsylvania v. Casey Justice Scalia wrote: "Roe was plainly wrong." Learn more about the Supreme Court Justices