Colorado Voters Say No to Banning Most Later-Term Abortions

Colorado voters rejected a measure that would have prohibited abortions after 22 weeks gestational age unless immediately required to save the life of a pregnant woman.

Voters shot down the citizens’ initiative (Proposition 115) by a vote of 59.1% to 40.9%, with 85% of the vote reported.

“For the fourth time in 12 years, Coloradans have rejected attempts to ban abortion at the ballot, trusting patients and families to make the personal medical decisions that are right for them, without interference from politicians,” said Lucy Olena, campaign manager for the No on 115 campaign.

In 1967, six years before the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Roe v. Wade, Colorado became the first state to pass a law broadening access to abortion. Today it’s one of seven states allowing abortion at any time during a pregnancy, and about 10% of Colorado abortions are performed on women from out of state, according to Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains.

In Louisiana, 62% of those who cast votes agreed to amend the state Constitution to add abortion restrictions (Amendment No. 1).

Adoption of the amendment won’t have an immediate effect on the three clinics in the state that provide abortions. If Roe v. Wade were to be overturned, the change approved Tuesday would limit interpretations of the state Constitution that might otherwise support abortion under citizens’ rights of privacy or due process. Louisiana already has a so-called trigger law on the books to ban abortion in that situation.

Without the amendment, abortion-rights advocates could challenge the state Constitution “to take taxpayer dollars that generally go to your hospitals and health care to pay for abortions,” one of the measure’s co-authors, state Sen. Katrina Jackson (D), told supporters in New Roads, La., on Oct. 3.

To contact the reporters on this story: Tripp Baltz in Denver at [email protected]; Jennifer Kay in Miami at [email protected]

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Katherine Rizzo at [email protected]; Heather Rothman at [email protected]

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