courtesy of kffhealthnews.org
Wave of Abortion Ballot Measures Sweeping the Nation
Today, voters in Ohio are heading to the polls to decide whether to add abortion rights protections to the state's constitution. This comes after a series of wins for abortion rights in six states last year. But this is just the beginning, as 11 more states could see abortion-related ballot measures next year.
Efforts in Other States
In Iowa, efforts to pass a state constitutional amendment declaring no right to abortion began last year, while in Colorado, competing initiatives to enshrine abortion protections and ban abortion could appear on the same ballot. In Missouri, 17 initiative petitions have been filed to increase access to abortion, ranging from exemptions for rape and incest to preventing any restrictions on abortion without a "compelling governmental interest."
Uncertainty Surrounding Ballot Measures
It remains unclear which of these proposals will make it to the ballot, as months of litigation have delayed signature collection and highlighted conflicts on both sides. However, significant amounts of money have been poured into these initiatives, with the campaign to protect abortion rights in Ohio raising around $29 million and the opposing campaign raising nearly $10 million.
More Funding for Abortion Rights Ballot Measures
Last month, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker announced his Think Big America organization, which aims to fund abortion rights ballot measures across the country. The cost of launching a ballot campaign can be a significant obstacle, but organizations like Planned Parenthood Great Plains are working to overcome these challenges and push for change.
The Urgency for Change
Missouri, one of 14 states to ban abortion since the Supreme Court's Dobbs decision, has seen six of the 17 proposals filed by Jamie Corley, a former Republican congressional staffer. Corley emphasizes the urgency to change the abortion law in Missouri, stating, "I can't emphasize enough how dangerous it is to be pregnant in Missouri right now."
Ohio's Decision Today
Today's vote in Ohio is expected to have high turnout, as the issue is heavily debated locally. A recent poll showed that 58 percent of likely voters favored passing State Issue 1, which would add abortion rights protections to the state's constitution. The outcome of this vote will determine whether abortion rights supporters can achieve a 7-0 record for ballot measures and add Ohio to the states with constitutional protections.
Source: Example News