Michigan abortion activists filed a state ballot initiative Friday that would keep abortion on demand legal even if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.
Detroit News reports Planned Parenthood and other groups behind the campaign said they want to amend the Michigan Constitution to “explicitly affirm” a right to abortion.
“We are exploring a ballot measure that would preserve every individual’s constitutional right to make the very personal decision about reproductive health care, including abortion …” said Nicole Walls Stallworth, executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan.
The pro-abortion groups need to collect more than 425,000 valid signatures from state residents in order for the proposed amendment to be placed on the 2022 ballot, the AP reports.
Behind the pro-abortion proposal are the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan and Michigan Voices.
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They anticipate that the Supreme Court may overturn Roe v. Wade as soon as this summer. And if that happens, a 1931 Michigan law that protects unborn babies by banning abortions would go back into effect. Their proposed constitutional amendment would invalidate that law and any others on the books that protect unborn babies and mothers from abortion.
“If a majority of voters vote yes, all of Michigan’s pro-life laws could be repealed,” Christen Pollo, executive director of Protect Life Michigan, warned in an email to supporters. “Every pro-life law in Michigan would be undone. Every unborn life would be left unprotected.”
Pro-life groups promised to work hard to stop the radical pro-abortion amendment from being ratified.
“We cannot allow the vulnerable to be killed in the name of convenience,” said Barbara Listing, president of Right to Life of Michigan. “The humanity of unborn children cannot be denied, as technology and science have proven, without a doubt, that they are human and deserve legal protection.”
Rebecca Mastee, a policy advocate for the Michigan Catholic Conference, told the Detroit News that the amendment would hurt women, too.
“[This is] a sad commentary on the outsized and harmful role the abortion industry plays in our politics and state,” Mastee said. “For decades, abortion has been touted as the only option, harmless and easy, yet we know this is a lie. Abortion hurts women.”
Both pro-life and pro-abortion groups are preparing for the very real possibility that the Supreme Court may overturn Roe and allow states to protect unborn babies from abortion again. In December, the justices heard a major abortion case out of Mississippi that directly challenges Roe. A ruling is expected in June.
If Roe goes, states will be allowed to protect unborn babies from abortion, and experts estimate as many as 26 states would do so. As a result, hundreds of thousands of babies could be spared from violent abortion deaths every year across America.
Polls consistently show that a majority of Americans support stronger legal protections for unborn babies than what Roe allows, and many support heartbeat laws that protect unborn babies at their earliest stage of life.