Alabamians will take abortion stance in general election

Some advocates against the amendment say it could be a stepping stone to making abortions illegal
Updated: Oct. 22, 2018 at 5:18 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Voters will make a stance on abortion in the general election with Amendment 2 on the ballot.

Part of the amendment says the state would “recognize and support the sanctity of unborn life and the rights of unborn children.”

Amendment 2 wouldn’t make abortions illegal in the state because Roe v. Wade has not been overturned, according to the Alabama Policy Institute.

However, Katie Glenn, the Alabama State Director for Planned Parenthood, said approving Amendment 2 could eventually lead to illegal abortions in the state.

“We believe Amendment 2 would pave the way to be an abortion without exception in the state of Alabama,” said Glenn. “Regardless of if the person is a victim of rape, or incest, or if their life is in danger.”

The Alabama Policy Institute is a conservative think tank supporting Amendment 2. Parker Snider is the director for policy analysis at the institute.

“If we’re going to be able to change the hearts and minds of people in our state and our country that abortion is actually a wrong thing to be doing for all people, we’re going to need to show that Alabama, as one of the bedrocks of the pro-life movement, is still going strong here,” Snider said.

Snider said if Roe v. Wade is overturned, the Alabama legislature would not make abortions immediately illegal in the state. The state legislature would still need to make changes to the laws.

“This constitutional amendment kind of just pushes them to create laws,” he said. “It wouldn’t be an automatic thing. There are exceptions that would need to be worked out, such as the life of the mother. This (amendment 2) is more of a signal and reminder for them that in the future, if Roe v. Wade gets overturned, they’ll have to do something about it.”

Glenn said the amendment would encourage Alabama lawmakers to pass more extreme restrictions against abortion.

“We’ve seen time again that Alabama politicians will do everything in their power to decrease access to safe and legal abortion,” she said. “Proponents of Amendment 2 would like you to think that it has no real-world implications, but frankly that’s not true.”

Here is the full amendment text voters will see on the ballot:

“Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended; to declare and otherwise affirm that it is the public policy of this state to recognize and support the sanctity of unborn life and the rights of unborn children, most importantly the right to life in all manners and measures appropriate and lawful; and to provide that the constitution of this state does not protect the right to abortion or require the funding of abortion.”

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