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November 30, 2023

Abortion IS on the Ballot: The Top Pro-Life Ballot Initiatives for 2024

 

This blog will be updated on a rolling basis throughout the 2024 election year… please check back in monthly.

If you follow politics at all, you’ve heard of Ballot Initiatives. Ballot Initiatives have been a get-out-the-vote tool for partisans for years, though they can sound like a good idea. Ballotopia explains,The ballot initiative process allows citizens to propose statutes or constitutional amendments, depending on the state, and collect signatures to place their proposals on the ballot for voters to decide.”  

The difficulties: The person with more money usually defines what is at stake. The ballot initiative will have language unfamiliar to voters, often written in a way that is deliberately confusing. Therefore, advertising and media support really matter. And when you’re fighting to protect life, friendly reporters and lots of money are not usually available.  The confusion also becomes a gift to judges and lawyers. The interpretation of the vague or confusing language ends up taking the issue even further than expected (which is certainly a goal.) And they can be a tool of carpet baggers, coming into a state with their politics and outside cash, and then leaving when they get what they want.  

Lately, Ballot referendums are the preferred tactic of the abortion industrial complex and their corporate funders. Following the end of Roe v. Wade’s forced insertion of abortion into the U.S. Constitution, the abortion lobby has been working to add it into state constitutions wherever they can, and in fact, 26 states allow for citizen-initiated ballot measures.

Following disappointing results in the recent voting cycle, Students for Life Action President Kristan Hawkins noted: “Democrats spent $400-plus million this election cycle trying to convince Americans that the right to end the life of an inconvenient human being was a fundamental issue, but that tactic has a shelf life. As we begin to protect life in law and in service around the country, women will see for themselves that abortion is not the only option.”

To read more on how deceptive messaging played a role in the Kansas vote, read Hawkins’ op-ed titled:
A Pro-Abortion Sleight Of Hand: How Leftists Used A Disinformation Campaign To Misdirect Kansans

Students for Life Action (SFLAction) previously recounted in a blog what’s coming down the line into 2024 – and as of 7/8/2024, we’re providing the next update on the numerous states where life will once again be on the ballot. To help sort through the lies and double-speak, we have compiled a summary of each ballot initiative to make sure you know what you need to about each vote:  

 

STATES WHERE ABORTION IS CONFIRMED TO BE ON THE BALLOT OR SIGNATURES ARE IN REVIEW

Arizona 

What: The Arizona Abortion Access Act 

Ballot Vote Date: November 5, 2024   

About the Vote: 

  • This measure would establish “fundamental entitlement” for individuals to get an abortion at any point before 23 to 24 weeks gestation (around five and half months of pregnancy).  
  • Arizona for Abortion Access, a pro-abortion coalition with support from organizations such as the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Arizona, Arizona List, and Planned Parenthood of Arizona, is gathering signatures through volunteers and paid staff. 
  • Presently, Arizona permits abortion up to 15 weeks of gestation (around four months) without exceptions for cases of rape or incest, and it does specifically clarify protections for emergency medical treatment to safeguard the life of the mother.  
  • An Arizona appellate court panel ruled on December 30, 2022, that the 15-week restriction would remain in place.
  • On May 2, the Governor of Arizona signed a repeal that was passed by both the AZ House and Senate, putting the 15 week law back into effect.
  • A simple majority (more than 50%) is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.

Summary:  

  • To protect life, pro-lifers must first decline to sign in an attempt to stop the initiative from appearing on the ballot. 
  • If it goes to the ballot, a “NO” vote will stop the act from passing, keeping the present abortion limits in place. 

 

Colorado 

What: Ballot Collection for the “Protections for a Living Child Act” 

Ballot Vote Date: November 5, 2024   

About the Vote: 

  • The state has competing ballot initiatives – one to protect existing abortion access, the other to greatly reduce it. 
  • The pro-abortion side is seeking a constitutional amendment that would keep the state from banning abortion and allow insurance coverage for abortions, overturning a 1984 law 
  • The pro-life movement is seeking to pass the “Protections for a Living Child Act,” which would prohibit abortion in Colorado and define a fertilized egg (a zygote) as an “alive” human being because “no human being is property of another human to dispose of at-will.”  
  • Currently, the state has no limits barring abortion at any point in the pregnancy. 
  • Both measures need 124,000 signatures to appear on the ballot and at least 55% of the vote is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.
  • A news report from May 20, 2024 indicated that the signatures were collected and have been submitted for review.

Summary:  

  • Pro-lifers must decline to sign the pro-abortion measure and instead sign onto the pro-life motion to get the “Protections for a Living Child Act” onto the ballot. 

Read: Students For Life Action Condemns HB 1279, New Colorado Law Removing All Rights From Preborn Children & Endangering Women 

 

Florida   

What: Amendment to Limit Government Interference with Abortion 

Ballot Vote Date: November 5, 2024 

About the Vote: 

  • The abortion lobby needed nearly 900,000 signatures by February 1, 2024, to get the amendment on the 2024 ballot. Enough signatures were collected, according to reporting from The Washington Post, by the pro-abortion group called “Floridians Protecting Freedom” to reverse the recently passed Heartbeat Abortion Prevention Act which was signed into law by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.   
  • The proposed ballot language was challenged in court, but the FL Supreme Court ruled it will move ahead to November 2024.
  • The legislation, if voted into law, will “provide a constitutional right to abortion before fetal viability, which is estimated to be around 24 weeks, or when necessary to protect the patient’s health, as determined by the patient’s healthcare provider.
  • It needs 60% of the vote to pass and be signed into law.

Summary:  

  • A “NO” vote will stop the amendment from passing and stop the expansion of abortion in the state.    

Read: Students for Life Action Heading to Tallahassee TOMORROW to Call on the Florida Supreme Court to Protect Life 

 

Maryland 

What: Maryland Right to Reproductive Freedom Amendment  

Ballot Vote Date: November 5, 2024  

About the Vote: 

  • This amendment would alter the Maryland Constitution to guarantee a right to “reproductive freedom, including the ability to prevent, continue, or end one’s own pregnancy.”   
  • Currently, Maryland allows abortion up until viability. 
  • A simple majority (more than 50%) is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.

Summary:  

  • Voting “NO” will stop the amendment from passing and stop the expansion of abortion in the state.   

READ: Protect the Preborn from Radical Abortion Extremism in Maryland!  

 

Missouri 

What: Missouri Right to Reproductive Freedom Amendment 

Ballot Vote Date: November 5, 2024  

About the Vote: 

  • Missourians for Constitutional Freedom, a pro-abortion group, has submitted 11 different ballot initiatives to seek out a right to abortion in the state.  10 had to be withdrawn.
  • The proposed law would amend the Missouri Constitution to provide the right for “reproductive freedom,” which is defined as “the right to make and carry out decisions about all matters relating to reproductive health care, including but not limited to prenatal care, childbirth, postpartum care, birth control, abortion care, miscarriage care, and respectful birthing conditions.”  
  • A specific pro-abortion initiative would need 171,000 signatures to appear on the ballot. 
  • A simple majority (more than 50%) is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.
  • According to reporting by the Missouri Independent, the required signatures have been submitted for review.

Summary:  

  • To protect life, pro-lifers must first decline to sign in an attempt to stop the initiative from appearing on the ballot.  
  • If it goes to the ballot, a “NO” vote will stop the amendment from passing and stop the expansion of abortion in the state.   

READ: On the Road to Reversing Roe, Missouri Defunds Planned Parenthood and Defends Children  

 

Nevada 

What: Right to Abortion Initiative  

Ballot Vote Date: November 5, 2024  

About the Vote: 

  • Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro introduced a constitutional amendment that could enshrine existing abortion rights in the state constitution.  
  • The amendment would take the state’s late-term abortion limit even further, despite the fact that Nevada already allows abortions up to 24 weeks (about six months of pregnancy).  
  • 102,000 signatures needed to be collected by June in order to get this measure on the ballot. 
  • On June 30, it was confirmed that the initiative would be on the ballot.
  • A simple majority (more than 50%) is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.

Summary:  

  • To protect life, pro-lifers must first decline to sign in an attempt to stop the initiative from appearing on the ballot.  
  • If it goes to the ballot, a “NO” vote will stop the amendment from passing and stop the expansion of abortion in the state.    

 

New York 

What: New York Equal Protection of Law Amendment  

When: November 5, 2024   

About the Vote: 

  • The amendment would change New York’s Equal Protection Clause in their constitution, preventing the “deprivation of rights to individuals on grounds of ethnicity, national origin, age, disability,” and additionally, “sex, encompassing sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, pregnancy outcomes, and reproductive healthcare and autonomy.”  
  • A simple majority (more than 50%) is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.
  • A Federal judge ruling has put this on hold until further notice.

Summary:  

  • A “NO” vote will stop the amendment from passing, stopping the expansion of abortion in the state.   

READ: Legislation Providing Access to Deadly Chemical Abortion Pills Signed by New York Governor, SFLAction Opposes College Campuses as Grounds for Abortion Lobby  

 

South Dakota 

What: Right to Abortion Amendment 

Ballot Vote Date: November 5, 2024  

About the Vote: 

  • Currently, the state has heavily reduced abortion access through all stages of pregnancy, except to save a mother’s life.  
  • The proposed ballot measure would make abortion legal in South Dakota with regulations after the first and second trimester. At the end of the second trimester, the measure says that the state may regulate or prohibit abortion “except when it is necessary, in the medical judgement of the woman’s physician, to preserve the life or physical or emotional health of the pregnant woman.”  
  • 17,000 signatures are needed to put it on the ballot. 
  • A simple majority (more than 50%) is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.
  • According to reporting by NBC News the necessary signatures have been submitted for review.

Summary:  

  • To protect life, pro-lifers must first decline to sign in an attempt to stop the initiative from appearing on the ballot. 
  • If it goes to the ballot, a “NO” vote will stop the amendment from passing and stop the expansion of abortion in the state.  

READ: SFLAction, Liberty Justice Center File New Lawsuit to Combat South Dakota Law That Would Dox Pro-Life Donors 

 

STATES WHERE THE BALLOT INITIATIVE HAS BEEN PUT ON HOLD OR STOPPED

Arkansas 

What: The Arkansas Reproductive Healthcare Amendment 

Signature Collection Deadline: July 5, 2024 

Ballot Vote Date: Likely November 5, 2024   

About the Vote: 

  • The pro-abortion group Arkansans for Limited Government submitted a ballot proposal which would repeal and prevent any restrictions on abortion up to 18 weeks after conception. 
  • The proposed ballot language was rejected in November 2023, and must be reworked in order for signature collection to begin.  
  • Over 90,000 signatures are required for this to be on the ballot.  
  • The signatures have been submitted for review, according to reporting from Little Rock Public Radio.
  • A simple majority (more than 50%) is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.
  • As of July, this ballot initiative is on hold and has been stopped after judicial review.

Summary:  

  • To protect life, pro-lifers must first decline to sign in an attempt to stop the initiative from appearing on the ballot. 
  • If it goes to the ballot, a “NO” vote will stop the act from passing, keeping the present abortion limits in place. 

 

STATES WHERE SIGNATURES ARE STILL BEING GATHERED

Montana

What: Montana Right to Abortion Initiative

Signature Collection Deadline: June 21, 2024 

Ballot Vote Date: Likely November 5, 2024  

About the Vote: 

  • The proposed law would “affirm the right to make and carry out decisions about one’s own pregnancy, including the right to abortion, in the Montana Constitution.” The amendment would also “prohibits the government from denying or burdening the right to abortion before fetal viability.” Additionally, the amendment ensures that the government cannot deny or burden access to an abortion when it is necessary to protect the pregnant patient’s life or health. This constitutional amendment “prevents the government from punishing patients, healthcare providers, or anyone who assists someone in seeking reproductive care, including abortion care.”  
  • A specific pro-abortion initiative would need over 60,000 signatures to appear on the ballot. 
  • A simple majority (more than 50%) is needed for it to pass and be signed into law.

Summary:  

  • To protect life, pro-lifers must first decline to sign in an attempt to stop the initiative from appearing on the ballot.  
  • If it goes to the ballot, a “NO” vote will stop the amendment from passing and stop the expansion of abortion in the state.

Nebraska 

What: Right to Abortion Initiative  

Signature Collection Deadline: July 5, 2024 

Ballot Vote Date: Likely November 5, 2024  

About the Vote: 

  • Local abortion supporters and Nebraska legislators are attempting to enshrine abortion rights into the Nebraska Bill of Rights.  
  • Currently, the state restricts abortion after the first 12 weeks (around three months of pregnancy). 
  • If successfully placed onto the ballot, and voted into law, it “would establish the right to an abortion. The measure would provide for the state to regulate abortion after fetal viability, except where medically indicated to protect the life, physical health, or mental health of the pregnant individual.”
  • The pro-life ballot question would protect preborn life by preventing abortions from occurring after 12 weeks, which is the current state law. 95% of abortions occur prior to 12-weeks.  The exact language states: “Except when a woman seeks an abortion necessitated by a medical emergency or when the pregnancy results from sexual assault or incest, unborn children shall be protected from abortion in the second and third trimesters.”
  • For the proposals to pass and be signed into law, “not only do more people have to vote for the measure than against, but also at least 35% of voters casting ballots must vote for the measure” according to the State Constitution.
  • Some of the signatures have been removed and are in dispute.

Summary:  

  • To protect life, pro-lifers must first decline to sign in an attempt to stop the initiative from appearing on the ballot. 
  • If it goes to the ballot, a “NO” vote will stop the amendment from passing and stop the expansion of abortion in the state.   

READ: Students for Life Action Returns to Nebraska to Raise Awareness of Senator Merv Riepe’s Broken Promises to Protect Innocent Life in New Billboard Campaign   

 

In addition to the ballot initiatives that have established voting dates and / or are moving forward with signature collection campaigns, future ballot initiatives or State Constitutional Amendments may come up in other States and we will provide additional updates as they become available.  

In the past year, SFLAction has helped protect life successfully in many states across the nation, but the fight against the abortion industrial complex is far from over. While SFLAction continues to address pro-abortion ballot referendums, we encourage readers to check back into this blog for important updates and ways to get involved.  

 

To learn more about how to get involved with SFLAction, click HERE.