Arizona Abortion Rights Supporters Submit Record-Breaking Petition for Constitutional Amendment Initiative

Arizona abortion rights rally.

Arizona Abortion Rights Advocates Overwhelm Petitions for Constitutional Amendment

Overwhelm Support for Abortion Rights Amendment

In a monumental show of support for reproductive rights, abortion rights advocates within Arizona submitted over double the amount of necessary signatures on Wednesday. The impressive display of solidarity occurred to propel an initiative that aims to establish the right to abortion within the state’s constitution, a topic of pressing concern and fierce debate. The ER>& coalition behind this effort, titled Arizona for Abortion Access, submitted a staggering 823,685 signatures, vastly exceeding the 383,923 required to facilitate a constitutional amendment initiative proposal.

Processing and Verification of Signatures

This volume of public support still requires verification and validation by the Secretary of State and the county officials. To place a question on the ballot, the Arizona Constitution mandates that the signatures from at least 15% of registered voters must be valid. These officials will process and evaluate the petition before the proposal can proceed. An August deadline has been set for completing this process.

The Proposition: Arizona Abortion Access Act

The proposed initiative, known as the Arizona Abortion Access Act, seeks to amend the state constitution, which will enshrine the right to an abortion. The proposed amendment restricts the state from denying access to abortions before fetus viability, typically at the 22 to 24 weeks mark in a pregnancy. Beyond this point, abortions can be performed, but only if deemed necessary to preserve the life, physical health, or mental well-being of the pregnant woman. Any individuals aiding a pregnant woman in exercising her right to an abortion cannot be penalized under this proposition.

Cheryl Bruce, the campaign manager of Arizona for Abortion Access, expressed excitement. “This is the most signatures ever gathered for a ballot measure in Arizona history“, Bruce stated, “which is a testament to the broad support among Arizonan voters for restoring and protecting abortion access in Arizona“.

Nationwide Movement

If cleared, Arizona will join five other states – Colorado, Florida, Maryland, Nevada, and South Dakota – who are allowing voters to decide whether to amend their respective state constitutions to include the right to an abortion. Campaigns in Arkansas, Missouri, Montana, and Nebraska are also striving to present the issue to voters in the upcoming Nov. 5 ballot. The controversial topic of abortion has become a motivator for voters nationwide, and Democrats hope this will hold true for this year’s general election.

Current Arizona Abortion Laws

As of now, Arizona law prohibits abortions after the 15-week pregnancy mark. However, the state captured national attention when its supreme court ruled to enforce an 1864 law, outlawing abortion unless necessary to save the mother’s life. This law, a relic from the Civil War era, managed to remain on the books despite not being implemented since the 1973 Roe decision, which made abortion legal across the entire nation. A recent dust storm of legislative activity has attempted to repeal this archaic law, with Governor Katie Hobbs succeeding in signing a repeal bill in May.

The battle over abortion rights continues to heat up, and while this latest action in Arizona signals a surge in public support for retaining and expanding access to reproductive healthcare, the road to November’s ballot is still long and fraught with bureaucratic hurdles.

Arizona Abortion Rights Supporters Submit Record-Breaking Petition for Constitutional Amendment Initiative

Author: HERE Irmo

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