Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

Abortion rights amendment qualifies for the South Dakota ballot

By 37ci3 May17,2024

South Dakota officials on Thursday approved a proposed amendment to the state constitution enshrining access to abortion to appear on the November ballot.

South Dakota Secretary of State Monae Johnson, a Republican, said in a statement that her office had approved the petition for the ballot measure and found that the organizers behind the effort had collected the required number of signatures.

The measure will appear on the state’s November ballot as “Constitutional Amendment G” and would “ensure the right to abortion in the South Dakota Constitution,” Johnson wrote.

The ballot placement can still be contested until June 17.

The development makes South Dakota the fourth state where a proposed constitutional amendment to enshrine abortion rights will appear on the November ballot, joining Florida, Maryland and New York. Organizers in seven other states they are trying to do the same thing.

While abortion rights advocates have had success with ballot measures in conservative states like Kansas and Kentucky since Roane’s fall, South Dakota presents an even tougher challenge. In a state where Donald Trump won by 26 points in 2020, he would need a simple majority of the ballot.

Dakotans For Health organizers noted the group behind the proposed amendment was an achievement.

“Two long years after we started, the South Dakota Secretary of State confirmed today that it will be the people of South Dakota, not the politicians in Pierre, who will decide whether Roe v. Wade is reinstated as South Dakota law,” said Dakotans For Health Chairman Rick Weiland. made a statement. “If anyone is wondering if abortion rights will be on the ballot in South Dakota this fall, today is your answer.”

The group’s proposal would make abortion legal in all cases during the first trimester of pregnancy. It would allow “adjustment” of abortion status during the second trimester of pregnancy, but such an adjustment “must be reasonably related to the physical health of the pregnant woman.” The amendment would allow for “regulation or prohibition” by the state in the third trimester, except when a doctor determines the care is necessary to “preserve the life or health” of the woman.

If the amendment passes, the state’s 2022 Roe v. It would almost completely overturn its ban on abortion, which was reinstated after the Wade case was overturned. all abortions except when necessary to save the woman’s life.

Organizers faced strong opposition to their efforts, including legal challenges. But the group was introduced earlier this month more than 55,000 signatures of registered voters in the state — more than the 35,000 needed to get the proposition on the ballot.

Of those, 85%, or just over 46,000, were deemed valid, state officials said Friday, meaning organizers had collected 11,000 more signatures than required.

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By 37ci3

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