As we move into the post-Roe world, the battle over abortion has moved to each of the states. One of the battlegrounds is in the area of state constitutional amendments where states are attempting to either enshrine abortion in their state constitution, or more explicitly state in their constitution that privacy does not extend to the matter of abortion, and that the matter is better left up to the will of the people and their elected officials in the legislative branch. Various states seem to be exploring the constitutional amendment path not only in the midterms, but through initiatives that are working their way through the legislative processes now and will be on the ballot in 2023 and 2024. Below is the text of some of the proposed amendments that voters will be deciding on in the 2022 midterms. Please share this information far and wide with anyone you may know who lives in these states so they can vote accordingly. This is especially true in states that involve enshrining abortion in a state constitution, because this will remove the opportunity from the people to engage with their legislators on the issue.
California SCA 10/Proposition 1 to be voted on in the general election, November 8
(SCA = Senate Constitutional Amendment)
SEC. 1.1. The state shall not deny or interfere with an individual’s reproductive freedom in their most intimate decisions, which includes their fundamental right to choose to have an abortion and their fundamental right to choose or refuse contraceptives. This section is intended to further the constitutional right to privacy guaranteed by Section 1, and the constitutional right to not be denied equal protection guaranteed by Section 7. Nothing herein narrows or limits the right to privacy or equal protection. The pro-life vote would be a NO vote.
Vermont Proposition 5 to be voted on in the general election, November 8
Sec. 2. Article 22 of Chapter I of the Vermont Constitution is added to read: Article 22. [Personal reproductive liberty] That an individual’s right to personal reproductive autonomy is central to the liberty and dignity to determine one’s own life course and shall not be denied or infringed unless justified by a compelling State interest achieved by the least restrictive means. The pro-life vote would be a NO vote.
Kentucky Constitutional Amendment 2 to be voted on November 8
“To protect human life, nothing in this Constitution shall be construed to secure or protect a right to abortion or require the funding of abortion.” The pro-life vote would be a YES vote.
Michigan - the campaign Reproductive Freedom for All submitted 753,759 signatures for a ballot initiative related to abortion rights on July 11. At least 425,059 of the signatures need to be valid to appear on the ballot November 8
“Every individual has a fundamental right to reproductive freedom, which entails the right to make and effectuate decisions about all matters relating to pregnancy, including but not limited to prenatal care, childbirth, postpartum care, contraception, sterilization, abortion care, miscarriage management, and infertility care.” The pro-life vote would be a NO vote.
Montana - Montana LR-131, the Medical Care Requirements for Born-Alive Infants Measure to be voted on November 8
“The state asserts a compelling interest in protecting the life of any infant born alive following an abortion. (2) An infant born alive is a legal person for all purposes under the laws of the state and is entitled to the protections of the laws, including the right to appropriate and reasonable medical care and treatment. (3) In the absence of proper legal protections, newly born infants who have survived abortions have been denied appropriate lifesaving or life-sustaining medical care and treatment and have been left to die.” The pro-life vote would be a YES vote.