Ballot Battles: Abortion Access Approved by Voters in These States, but Marijuana Votes Were Mixed
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Along with voting for candidates for the House and Senate on Tuesday, voters also weighed in on special ballot initiatives across the country. The biggest headlines came in several blue states where residents approved pro-abortion measures.
In Michigan, a state constitutional amendment enshrining "reproductive freedom" as a right was passed.
Vermonters also voted in favor of a measure protecting access to abortion.
Meanwhile, California passed an amendment declaring abortion a "fundamental right."
In Kentucky, voters rejected a pro-life measure that would have kept abortion from ever being added as a right to the state constitution. The amendment's defeat will have no practical impact on abortion access as long as a sweeping abortion ban that was approved by lawmakers survives a legal challenge presently before the state Supreme Court.
But the amendment's rejection leaves open the possibility that abortion could be declared a state right by the court.
Meanwhile, Montana's pro-life ballot measure is still undecided. That measure would decide whether infants who survive an abortion would be given status as "legal persons" to be given medical care as human beings outside the womb.
Marilyn Musgrave of Susan B. Anthony Pro-life America told CBN's Faith Nation that while their cause took a hit on ballot initiatives, strong pro-life governors did very well.
"Let's point out governors who are very pro-life governors like DeSantis, and Kemp, and DeWine, that have signed into law a heartbeat or pain-capable bills fared very well, so I think the pro-life movement needs to be encouraged," she said. "When we go on the offense, when we really reveal where the other side is on this issue, the American people, the voters, see the extremism of the other side."
LifeNews also points out that Republican governors who signed an abortion ban won by large margins – most by double-digits.
Other Initiatives on the Ballot in States
A Tennessee constitutional amendment that would remove the present ban on ministers serving in the state legislature is still undecided. But a Wednesday morning check by CBN News on Amendment 4 shows with 55% of precincts reporting, the "Yes" votes in favor of repealing the ban are ahead with 845,742 votes to 492,769 "No" votes that would keep the ban in place.
Voters approved recreational marijuana in Maryland and Missouri but rejected it in two other states. Arkansas and North Dakota voters rejected legalization proposals in Tuesday's elections. A similar initiative went before voters in South Dakota, but by Wednesday morning it was too early to call.
"The marijuana industry spent millions of dollars trying to write itself into the Arkansas Constitution," said Jerry Cox, executive director of the Family Council Action Committee, one of the groups opposing the measure. "Now they know that Arkansans do not support that kind of crony politics."
The state voting follows moves by President Joe Biden toward decriminalizing marijuana. Biden last month announced he was pardoning thousands of Americans convicted of simple possession of marijuana under federal law.
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