Colorados to decide on November vote initiative that would ban abortions after 22 weeks gestational age | Colorado

Initiative # 120, sponsored by Due Date Too Late, was designed to ban abortions after a fetus has reached the gestational age of 22 weeks, calculated from the first day of the last menstrual period (LMP) of wife.

To qualify for the ballot, 124,632 valid signatures were required. Sponsors submitted 114,647 valid signatures by the March 4 deadline and were allowed to collect additional signatures for a 15-day processing period. The Colorado Secretary of State’s office announced that the measure qualified for the ballot on June 8, 2020, after finding that supporters had submitted an additional 38,557 valid signatures, bringing the total number of valid signatures submitted to 153,204.

Under the initiative, performing a prohibited abortion would be an offense punishable by a fine except in cases where an abortion is required immediately to save the life of the pregnant woman. Medical professionals who have performed a prohibited abortion would have their medical license suspended by the Colorado Medical Board for at least three years. A woman who has a prohibited abortion could not be charged with a crime under the initiative.

Seven states – Alaska, Colorado, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon and Vermont – and Washington, DC, do not restrict abortions after a certain stage of pregnancy. The other 43 states restrict abortions at a certain stage of pregnancy based on varying criteria.

In 1973, the United States Supreme Court rendered its decision in Roe v. Wade, concluding that state laws criminalizing abortion before fetal viability violated the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution. The High Court ruled that states can regulate and / or prohibit abortions (except those intended to preserve the life or health of the mother) once a fetus reaches the point of viability.

One state prohibits abortion at 20 weeks PML, 17 states ban abortion at 22 weeks PML, and four states prohibit abortion at 24 weeks PML. Twenty states ban abortion at viability, which is approximately 24-28 weeks PML and varies by pregnancy. One state, Virginia, bans third trimester abortion, or about 25 weeks PML.

Measure sponsor Erin Behrens said, “We’re going to set a very reasonable limit of 22 weeks, which is roughly five months pregnant. And we believe that reasonable limit will pass massively in Colorado, and we will eventually be brought into the 21st century. We will finally be among all the other states that have reasonable limits, and we will ultimately not be the late abortion capital of the United States.

Jack Teter, Colorado political director for Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, said: “This measure has no exceptions for rape and incest, it has no exceptions for maternal health, and this is cruel and unacceptable and it is an abortion ban that voters are not going to support. “

Bob Enyart, a spokesperson for Colorado Right to Life, told Rewire.News: “Our misguided pro-life allies have presided over the regulation of child murder for decades. You don’t regulate crime; you discourage it. crime … Their immoral initiative seeks to protect children “who can survive outside the womb.” But what about others? “

The Coalition for Women and Children, which manages the too late deadline and supports the initiative, reported $ 63,849 in contributions and $ 44,400 in cash expenses according to the latest campaign funding reports, which covered until May 27. The biggest donors to the initiative’s support committee were Donald Hood and Kevin Heringer, who each donated $ 10,000.

Access to Abortion for All, who is registered to oppose the initiative, reported contributions of $ 105,000 and expenses of $ 2,600. The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado was the largest donor, providing $ 30,000.

Colorado voters defeated citizen-initiated constitutional amendments in 2008, 2010, and 2014 that attempted to define person to include unborn human beings from the time of fertilization.

Four other measures are up for grabs in Colorado:

• A veto referendum determining Colorado’s membership in the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (NPVIC) and allocating Colorado electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote if the NPVIC takes effect;

• An initiative to amend the Colorado Constitution to declare that only a citizen of the United States can vote in federal, state and local elections, instead of the existing language that says every citizen of the United States can vote;

• An initiative to reintroduce gray wolves on public lands; and

• A bond issue to allow the state to issue Transportation Income Anticipation Notes (TRAN) – a specific type of bond debt – in the amount of $ 1.837 billion without tax increases.

Fifteen initiatives have been approved for signature collection in Colorado with 124,632 valid signatures expected by August 3, 2020, to secure a spot on the ballot on November 3, 2020.

– The Place du Center

About Marc Womack

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