Oklahoma Supreme Court Claims Ballot Initiative to Ban Abortion Is Unconstitutional

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — The Oklahoma Supreme Court has struck down a petition to place on the state ballot a proposal to ban abortion in the state, as it claimed that the concept is unconstitutional.

Proposed Question 782, Initiative 406 would have amended the Oklahoma Constitution to include abortion as murder, and would criminalize those who take the life of an unborn child. It had been filed by Russell Hunter of the Abolitionist Society of Norman.

In addition to surgical and medical abortions, the initiative would “prohibit contraception that causes the death of an unborn human being.” It would also ban “the deliberate destruction of unborn human beings created in a laboratory.” It would not, however, general ban birth control or in-vitro fertilization.

Secular groups predicted following the filing that the proposal would not be permitted by the state Supreme Court.

“It is abundantly clear that any measure that would interfere with a woman’s constitutionally protected reproductive rights, including the legal right to have access to abortion, is unconstitutional,” Ryan Kiesel of the ACLU of Oklahoma told Tulsa World.

Hunter said that the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court ruling of Roe v. Wade, which has resulted in the deaths of nearly 60 million children and counting, was itself unconstitutional.

“The question is whether or not the Supreme Court ruling that born people have the right to kill unborn people was, in fact, constitutional in the first place,” he told the outlet. “That is what needs to be challenged.”

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“You can search day and night through the Constitution and you will never find one line supporting the idea that human beings can be deprived of the right to live simply because they are small, weak and unwanted,” Hunter said.

On Tuesday, the Oklahoma Supreme Court unanimously rejected the petition in a two-page ruling, contending that “[t]he proposed amendment to the Oklahoma Constitution is facially unconstitutional.” It said that the court “is not free to impose its own view of the law.”

Hunter said that he expected the decision, but does not agree with it, and hopes local residents will urge lawmakers to put it on the ballot.

“I am a Christian, so I should love my neighbors as I love myself” he said. “That would be all my neighbors, even my unborn neighbors and should uphold the Constitution, and the Constitution says no person shall be deprived of the right to life.”

Hunter had also been behind a petition signed by over 30,000 Oklahoma residents, calling for lawmakers to immediately present legislation that would completely end abortion in the state. The petition resulted in the presentation of S.B. 1118 by Sen. Joseph Silk, R-Broken Bow.

The bill would have added killing an unborn child to existing murder statutes, but was stalled in the state Senate earlier this month by Republican leadership.

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  • robertzaccour

    There’s a few states that have defied federal law and legalized marijuana. I’m indifferent to marijuana, but where I’m getting at is, if these states can stand in defiance for something that doesn’t seem to really matter, how long will it be for states to stand up to them and ban abortion? Do we really have to wait on the Supreme Court to tell us we have the right to ensure the youngest among us can have their right to life? I think all it will take is one state and then others will follow.

    • Paige Turner

      God made marijuana. I cant see what the problem is?

      • robertzaccour

        I’m indifferent about it. I don’t smoke and I don’t see it as a crime, I was just making a comparison explaining that states could stand in defiance for things that really matter.

      • He made poison ivy too.
        What a dumb post.

        • Paige Turner

          Nothing that God makes can be deemed to be bad.

          Your post is really dumb. Like seriously dumb.

          • bowie1

            You forget things changed after the Fall so now creation is under a curse which will some day be redeemed and all things made new. (That’s also when the climate changed so as not to be always ideal as it was before.)

          • Paige Turner

            Well that makes perfect sense.


          • acontraryview

            So no poison ivy after the rapture? How about cockroaches – I really hate them.

          • bowie1

            Everything will be beyond all we can imagine in perfect bliss and in nature.

          • acontraryview

            So no cockroaches – that’s great news!

          • Sean

            Maybe you can wear a disguise.

    • acontraryview

      There is a fundamental difference between the two. Federal law on marijuana is a prohibition. Some states have made the use of marijuana legal within certain parameters. There has been no court ruling regarding the constitutional right of citizens to own and use marijuana.

      Abortion, on the other hand, has been ruled to be right, within certain parameters, that exists. It is not a law. Therefore, it is fundamentally different than states allowing something that the federal government, by law, does not.

      • robertzaccour

        Don’t forget about the right to life.

        • acontraryview

          I haven’t. But as relates to the legality of abortion, that decision has already been made.

  • Paige Turner

    The major concern will be what Women will do about unwanted pregnancies if there is no Abortion available.

    • Charles

      Ummm… How about take responsibility for your actions?

      • Jalapeno

        Yeah, an unwanted kid is a totally legitimate consequence for something as horrible as having sex.

      • Ambulance Chaser

        I wonder why nobody shames people who suffer from sports injuries the way they shame unwed mothers.

        • Charles

          Because that’s a ridiculous comparison..

          • Ambulance Chaser

            How is it ridiculous? Both people did something fun, but unnecessary, and got injured doing it.

      • Paige Turner

        So becoming pregnant after being raped is the Woman’s responsibility? Or a failed prophylactic is a Woman’s responsibility? Or failed birth control is a Woman’s responsibility?

        Its very easy for you to throw stones in the glass house when you are a Male, Charles.

      • gizmo23

        Do you include fathers also?

        • Charles

          Yes I do.. Do you include the dad’s in the choice of an abortion?

        • Charles

          Is that a joke? Of course.. Does the man have a say in an abortion? No..

      • gizmo23

        Having an abortion would be talikng responsibility

  • SFBruce

    This outcome isn’t even remotely surprising. Certainly you have a right to believe Roe was wrongly decided, but unless and until the constitution is amended or SCOTUS overturns Roe, it is the law of the land.

  • EscapetheDarkness

    I don’t see where the U.S. Constitution grants female U.S. citizens the Constitutional right to have abortions. In light of this, the question of the legality of abortion should be left to the U.S. states, pursuant to the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.