The battle over granting legal rights to fertilized eggs in Oklahoma is already headed to the courts. This week the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), along with the American Civil Liberties Union filed suit to stop Personhood Oklahoma’s proposed ballot amendment that would define “personhood” from the point of conception from ever making it on the ballot.
The groups are suing on behalf of doctors who provide reproductive health care and individual women would be be affected by the amendment. CRR and the ACLU argue the measure is unconstitutional and dangerous to the lives of women.
Opponents of the personhood measure argue the bill would not only outlaw abortions outright, but would also criminalize most forms of birth control, emergency contraception and infertility treatments.
A personhood measure also passed the Oklahoma House of Representatives this week. So even if the ballot initiative is successfully blocked the personhood debate will remain very much alive. And litigated. “By their own admission, the proponents of this initiative aim to strip women and families of their established right to decide whether and when to become pregnant and carry a pregnancy to term,” said Ryan Kiesel, executive director of the ACLU of Oklahoma.
This is a lot of litigation for the state of Oklahoma. CRR recently won a contentious battle against the state’s mandatory ultrasound law as a district court judge ruled it unconstitutional. The state gave every indication they would appeal the decision.
I wonder just how much the war on women is costing Oklahoma taxpayers, exactly?
Photo from joewcampbell via flickr.