Michigan voters will decide this fall whether to ensure abortion rights in a constitutional amendment after the state’s Supreme Court instructs election officials to put the measure on the ballot.
In a 5-2 decision, the Michigan Supreme Court ordered the Board of State Canvasors to substantiate a recent petition to get abortion questions on the November 8 ballot.
The battle over the ballot went before the High Court after members of the state’s canvasser board got into a 2-2 standoff over whether to allow the initiative to go before voters this fall. Republicans on board argued that differences between certain words in the text of the abortion question made it “no longer”.[t]That’s the whole text. ,
The court sided with the plaintiffs—reproductive freedom for all, an abortion-rights group supporting the amendment—and ruled that the meaning of the words “was not changed by the perceived insufficient distinction between them.”
“We are glad that the court upheld the will of the people,” the group tweeted After Thursday’s decision. “Make sure to vote #YesOn3 this November 8th.”
In a consensus opinion, Chief Justice Bridget McCormack noted that more than 753,000 residents had signed the motion, “more than ever signed any motion in the history of Michigan.”
“The challengers have not produced a single signatory who claims to be confused by the limited-spacing sections in the full text portion of the proposal,” McCormack wrote. “They will disenfranchise millions of Michiganrs not because they believe the thousands of Michiganrs who signed the proposal were confused by it, but because they think they have identified a technicality that allows them to do so, Gotcha’s got a game too bad.”
A state judge on Wednesday struck down Michigan’s 1931 anti-abortion law, which criminalizes abortion unless the woman’s life is in danger. In that case, State Appeals Judge Elizabeth Gleicher ruled that the statute violated the state’s constitution.
Democrats in several states expect Michigan to have similar ballot measures by the time voters go to the polls.
Kansas voters were the first to vote on abortion rights after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June. Consensus rejected a ballot question proposing to remove language from a state’s constitution guaranteeing abortion rights.