WASHINGTON–No one denies that enough signatures were submitted to put a ballot initiative codifying the right to abortion on the Michigan ballot in November—more than 750,000, the largest number in state history. But when confronted with that number, extremist opponents of abortion care looked for a way to game the system and cheat Michigan voters out of their democratic rights.
So, anti-abortion lawmakers asked the state canvassing board to reject the petitions because of “spacing errors.” The board deadlocked in a 2-2 partisan vote, and the petitions were disallowed.
Seriously? The women of Michigan don’t get to vote on whether politicians should control their bodies because of the word “postpartumcare” on a petition?
NOW members and women everywhere are outraged, disgusted, saddened—but not surprised. We know what we’re up against when we mobilize the unstoppable power of democracy and grassroots activism to stand up for women’s lives. And we saw what can happen in places like Kansas, where a ballot measure to overturn abortion rights went down to a landslide defeat.
NOW supports the call for the Michigan Supreme Court to put the abortion question back on the November ballot. When choice is on the ballot, women win.
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The National Organization for Women (NOW) is the nation’s leading membership-based advocacy group dedicated to defending women’s rights, advancing equality and combating injustice in all aspects of social, political and economic life. Through educating, mobilizing, and convening a vast network of grassroots activists across the country, NOW advocates for national, state and local policies that promote an anti-racist and intersectional feminist agenda. Since its founding in 1966, NOW has been on the frontlines of nearly every major advancement for women’s rights and continues to champion progressive values today. More about NOW’s efforts and resources is available at NOW.org.