OK ballot initiative seeks to outlaw all abortions
A ballot initiative in Oklahoma filed by a Norman resident attempts to outlaw all abortions in the state. Thomas R. Hunter, filed the proposed petition in January with the Secretary of State to amend the Oklahoma State Constitution to “prohibit abortion.”
The proposed amendment, designated as State Question 782, Initiative Petition 406 reads:
BE IT ENACTED BY THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF OKLAHOMA THAT THE FOLLOWING
SECTION BE ADDED TO ARTICLE 2 OF THE OKLAHOMA CONSTITUTION:
A. As used in this section:
1. “Abortion” means the use or prescription of any instrument, medicine, drug, or any other substance or device to intentionally kill an unborn human being;
2. “Unborn human being” means the offspring of human beings from the moment of conception until either live birth or death, including the human conceptus, zygote, morula, blastocyst, embryo and fetus, whether conceived and/or located inside or outside the body of a human female;
3. “Conception” means the fertilization of the ovum of a female individual by the sperm of a male individual.
B. It shall be unlawful for any person to perform, procure, or attempt to perform an abortion.
C. Any person who performs or procures an abortion shall be guilty of homicide.
To get the measure on the ballot in November, Hunter will need to collect 123,725 signatures. But, according to Oklahoma state law any citizen in the state can oppose any petition on the basis that they believe that it the proposal is not Constitutional. Ryan Kiesel, executive director of the pro-abortion ACLU of Oklahoma said his group could launch a protest before the signatures are gathered to keep it off the ballot or challenge it later should the necessary signatures be collected to get it on the ballot.
In response, Hunter told Tulsa World, that “The question is whether or not the Supreme Court ruling that born people have the right to kill unborn people was, in fact, constitutional in the first place.”
“That is what needs to be challenged,” he stated.
“You can search day and night through the Constitution and you will never find one line supporting the idea that human beings can be deprived of the right to live simply because they are small, weak and unwanted,” Hunter added.
In addition to local abortion supporters speaking out against the initiative, 2016 pro-abortion presidential candidate Hillary Clinton also weighed in.
Hillary for America Senior Policy Advisor Maya Harris called the petition another “unrelenting attack” on women’s rights, according to OkcFox, who received an e-mailed statement from the campaign.
“Hillary Clinton believes Oklahoma women have a constitutional right to safe, legal abortion and to contraception, and they deserve to be able to make their health care decisions without interference from government or extreme special interest groups,” Harris wrote, according to the local Fox media outlet.
“Banning abortion and common forms of birth control is not only unconstitutional — it is bad for the health of Oklahoma women. This initiative petition should be challenged and, if it makes it on the ballot, rejected by Oklahomans like similar measures have been rejected by voters in other states.”
If the abortion prohibition is not challenged in court, the Secretary of State would set a 90-day window during which proponents would need to gather the needed signatures of registered voters. If successful, the question could be placed on the November ballot.
Hunter, who refers to himself as an Abolitionist, told Saynsumthn that he is not accepting donations or raising any funds to promote his ballot initiative. When asked what others can do to assist him in his effort, he replied that he would like to, “ask people to pray for the state of Oklahoma that the people would repent of child sacrifice and abortion apathy.”