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Post-Roe, ‘both parties are hoping to mobilize their voters,’ says UMSL professor

Former President Donald Trump gestures towards the crowd on Saturday, June 25, 2022, at a “Save America!” Rally at the Adams County Fairgrounds in Mendon, Ill.
Brian Munoz
St. Louis Public Radio
Former President Donald Trump gestures toward the crowd on Saturday at a rally at the Adams County Fairgrounds in Mendon, Ill.

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to strike down Roe v. Wade sent shockwaves throughout Missouri on Friday, where state law now bans abortions except for medical emergencies.

All six of Missouri’s major Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate have expressed support for the new law.

On Monday’s St. Louis on the Air, guest host Jason Rosenbaum talked with University of Missouri-St. Louis political scientist Anita Manion about how the Supreme Court ruling could influence Missouri’s midterm elections.

How Roe v. Wade ruling may affect midterms in Missouri and Illinois

“Our U.S. Senate race is particularly important to the Republican Party, as they only need to net one additional seat in November to take control of the Senate,” she said.

Manion added that despite the fact that the Supreme Court has ruled on Roe v. Wade, she doesn’t see the issue as settled for either side of the aisle.

“We see both parties are hoping to mobilize their voters around this,” she said. “I think it's not as much of an effect in the primary that's coming up, but more so in the general race. Even though Missouri is now a reliably red state, the Republican Party still doesn't want to alienate those suburban or moderate voters — some of those voters that we saw, maybe, make a shift based on Donald Trump.

"This could be an issue that causes them to make that shift to be more Democratic," Manion said.

Rosenbaum and Manion also discussed the possibility of federal legislation to preserve access to abortion, how this issue will compare to others at the ballot box (like inflation and gas prices), and how the decision may influence high-stakes contests in Illinois, including the governor’s race and the primary for Illinois’ 13th Congressional District seat.

St. Louis on the Air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The show is hosted by Sarah Fenske and produced by Emily Woodbury, Kayla Drake, Danny Wicentowski and Alex Heuer. Avery Rogers is our production assistant. The audio engineer is Aaron Doerr.

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Emily is the senior producer for "St. Louis on the Air" at St. Louis Public Radio.
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