California Group Halfway on Signatures for Parental Notification on Abortion

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 25, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

California Group Halfway on Signatures for Parental Notification on Abortion Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
February 25
, 2008

Sacramento, CA ( — The organization collecting signatures for a third try at passing a ballot proposal to provide for parental notification on abortion is halfway there. The initiative requires teens to wait 48 hours for an abortion so their parents can be notified about it and have a chance at helping them make a better decision.

As of today, the signature count for Sarah’s Law topped 600,000 out of a total of 1.1 million raw signatures needed.

Mike Byrne, the head of Friends of Sarah talked about the girl for whom the parental involvement organization is named.

Sarah was a 15-year-old girl who underwent an abortion without her parents knowing, he told The abortion practitioner unknowingly tore her cervix and she developed a massive infection and died.

Sarah’s Law, an initiative headed for the California ballot in November, will require that the abortion practitioner notify at least one parent beforehand to stop the thousands of secret abortions on teenagers happening in the state.

Like Proposition 73 in and Proposition 85, both of which narrowly lost on the ballot, Sarah’s Law requires parental notification.

However, Sarah’s Law will allow, in the case of abusive parents, another adult relative, a grandmother, aunt, adult sibling to be notified instead.

That has caused some pro-life advocates to oppose the measure because they worry it would open the process to people who shouldn’t be making or assisting medical decisions for children or who could promote an abortion a teen’s parents oppose.

Abortion practitioners who violate the notification law would be subject to fines and teenagers could sue if coerced into having an abortion.

The backers of Sarah’s Law have until April 18 to qualify the ballot proposal.

After a parental notification ballot measure failed in 2005, pro-life advocates thought it would fare better during a general election. Instead, Proposition 85 did worse in 2006 than its Proposition 73 companion in the previous election.

Opponents, led by Planned Parenthood abortion centers, raised more than $5.4 million to defeat the measure while pro-life advocates had about $3 million to promote it.

Exit polling shows proponents didn’t connect with minority voters as well as pre-polling data showed they were doing.

White voters opposed the parental notification measure by a 56-44 clip and Hispanic voters were expected to make up the difference with their strong support. Though pre-election polling showed they backed the initiative by a large margin, they split just 50-50 on election day.

Black California residents opposed Prop 85 on a 56-44 percent margin while Asians backed it 53-47.

Related web sites:
Friends of Sarah –