Fri. May 24th, 2024

Missouri abortion rights group collects enough signatures to advance ballot measure

By 37ci3 May4,2024

A proposed amendment to the Missouri constitution to enshrine access to abortion has cleared a major hurdle to appear on the ballot this year after a coalition of reproductive rights advocates submitted the required number of valid signatures to state officials.

The group Missourians for Constitutional Liberties, which led the ballot effort, said it had collected more than 380,000 signatures. registered voters — more than the roughly 172,000 people needed to continue the process of identifying their proposition for the ballot.

The group faced a May 5 deadline to submit signatures.

The proposed amendment would enshrine language in the state constitution protecting abortion rights until fetal viability or the 24th week of pregnancy, with exceptions for the life and health of the mother.

The amendment specifically states that the government “shall not deny or infringe the fundamental right of the people to reproductive freedom,” and the amendment defines all reproductive health decisions, including clearly defined “birth control,” “abortion care,” and “prenatal care.” . ” – until the viability of the fetus.

The proposal also makes any “denial, interference with, delay or limitation” of such care “null and void.”

After that point, the government can regulate abortion, except in cases where the treating health care provider deems the mother’s “life, physical or mental health” to be at risk.

At the same time, the amendment would allow legislators and state officials to restrict or restrict abortion rights “for limited purposes and with limited effect to improve or maintain the health of the person seeking care. conforms to widely accepted clinical standards of practice and evidence-based medicine and does not impair the individual’s autonomous decision-making capacity.”

Missouri has one of the strictest abortion bans in the United States, except to protect the life of the mother and for emergency medical care. If the amendment were to pass, it would effectively repeal that law.

It is likely that ballot measure efforts will still face legal challenges in the coming weeks and months. Anti-abortion rights Republicans in the state, including conservative Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft, have been fighting the coalition’s moves in court for months.

Last year, Missourians for Constitutional Freedom submitted 11 proposed amendments to state officials. Since March, the group’s proposed ballot language has faced legal challenges from Ashcroft.

Only after the coalition won those claims could choose which of the proposed measures to go to the signature gathering stage.

It remains unclear whether the amendment will appear on the primary or general election ballot.

Under state law, Republican Gov. Mike Parson has the sole authority to decide which ballot the measure will be placed on. He can choose to place the proposed amendment on the Aug. 6 primary or Nov. 5 general election ballot.

Missouri is one of 11 states where organizers are trying to enshrine abortion rights in state constitutions through citizen-led ballot initiatives. The measures are officially on the ballot in Maryland, New York and Florida.

Source link

By 37ci3

Related Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *