Anti-choice fetal personhood activists said Monday that they had collected enough signatures in Colorado to put another initiative defining a fetus as a person with full legal rights on the state ballot this fall.
Personhood Colorado said in a statement that it had submitted 112,121 signatures to officials in Colorado, surpassing the 86,105 that are required to put the measure on the ballot. Signatures still need to be counted and verified by state officials.
Colorado voters have already rejected two previous ballot attempts to outlaw abortion by recognizing fetal personhood. In 2008 the personhood measure got only 27 percent of the vote and in 2010 only 30 percent. Apparently Colorado Personhood believes the third time is the charm.
Planned Parenthood, the Center for Reproductive Rights and the American Civil Liberties Union have been fighting personhood measures like this one across the country. On Monday, Planned Parenthood responded to this latest announcement in a statement: “For the third time in the past consecutive general elections, Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains today vowed to defeat the so-called personhood initiative. ‘Personhood’ amendments ban all abortion, specifically for victims of rape and incest. Personal, private medical decisions would be taken out of a woman’s hands, and controlled by politicians and the government … These decisions are best left to a woman, her family, and her faith.”
Of course, that’s a reality the people behind the personhood movement would like to ignore. “Our opposition has built a reputation of using scare tactics to deter voters from human-life amendments,” said Keith Mason, president of Personhood USA. “Now that we have specifically outlined the effects of the amendment within the law, we believe that Colorado voters will not be intimidated by those who profit from abortion.”
As Robin Marty reports, Personhood Colorado claims to have engaged at least 500 churches in gathering signatures in support of the measure, which again begs the question of when we can start reviewing the tax exempt status for these religious institutions that are politicking from the pulpit.
Photo from Rochelle, just rochelle via flickr.