Roe v. Wade (7-2).

The Supreme Court rules that:
  • abortion is encompassed within the right to privacy;
  • abortion restrictions must be narrowly tailored to serve a "compelling" state interest;
  • before viability (when the fetus can survive outside the womb), the state's interest in fetal life is not compelling;
  • even after viability, when the state's interest in fetal life becomes compelling, the state must allow abortions necessary to protect a woman's life or health;
  • the state's interest in maternal health becomes compelling at the end of the first trimester of pregnancy;
  • a fetus is not a "person" under the Fourteenth Amendment, nor may the state justify restrictions on abortion based on one theory of when life begins.

Majority opinion written by Justice Harry Blackmun. Voting for: Chief Justice Warren Burger and Justices William J. Brennan, Jr., William O. Douglas, Potter Stewart, Thurgood Marshall, and Lewis Powell. Voting against: Justices Byron White and William Rehnquist.