Abortion rights group wants changes to 100-word summary of its ballot proposal ⋆ Michigan Advance

know about Abortion rights group wants changes to 100-word summary of its ballot proposal ⋆ Michigan Advance

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The Reproductive Freedom For All (RFFA) campaign takes issue with the proposed outline of its constitutional amendment that would appear on the ballot on November 8.

Last week, Elections Director Jonathan Brater wrote proposed language for the 100-word summary that says the proposal “would invalidate all state laws that conflict with this amendment.” RFFA argues that the initiative to enshrine reproductive health and abortion care in the Michigan Constitution does not invalidate all conflicting laws.

This is one of the issues the State Canvassing Board will have to weigh during its Wednesday morning meeting in Lansing.

The coalition, made up of Planned Parenthood of Michigan, ACLU of Michigan, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan and Michigan Voices, aims to amend the state Constitution to ensure the right of Michiganders to make and carry out decisions related to pregnancy , including abortion, birth control. , prenatal care and childbirth.

Here is the language Brater proposed to be on the ballot in November:

“A proposal to amend the state constitution to establish a new individual right to reproductive freedom, including the right to make all decisions about pregnancy; allow the state to ban abortion in some cases; and prohibit the prosecution of persons exercising established right This proposed constitutional amendment:

  • Establish a new individual right to reproductive freedom, including the right to make and carry out all decisions about pregnancy, such as prenatal care, childbirth, postpartum care, contraception, sterilization, abortion, miscarriage management and infertility;
  • Allow the state to prohibit abortion after fetal viability unless necessary to protect the life or physical or mental health of a patient;
  • Prohibit state discrimination in the application of this right; prohibit the prosecution of a person, or a person who assists a pregnant person, for exercising the rights established by this amendment; and invalidate all state laws that conflict with this amendment.
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Should this proposal be adopted?

In a letter to Brater last week, Steve Liedel, a lawyer representing the RFFA campaign, asked that the language be changed to say that it “would prevent the application of laws in conflict with this amendment.”

This line would replace the line in the Brater proposal stating that it “would invalidate all state laws that conflict with this amendment.”

“Nothing in the text of the proposed constitutional amendment overrides other laws,” Liedel wrote. “Instead, if adopted, the constitutional amendment may restrict executive officials from enforcing other laws or parts of laws.”

Liedel goes on to say that the courts would have to determine whether the amendment restricts or prevents the application of an already established law.

RFRA submitted a record number of signatures for inclusion on the ballot. The Elections Office recommended Thursday that the State Canvassing Board certify the Reproductive Freedom for All proposal. However, opponents of the measure have questioned it over a space issue, which the board will have to consider.

TThe State Canvassing Board will vote on Wednesday whether or not to place the measure on the ballot. The board is also set to consider the proposal’s 100-word summary language. The panel is split 2-2 between Democrats and Republicans.