SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California secretary of state has cleared a proposed initiative that would criminalize abortion in the state as murder, allowing supporters to begin collecting signatures in an effort to have the proposal placed on the 2018 ballot.
Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced on Friday that the initiative had been given the green light and may now move forward for circulation. According to his press release, Attorney General Xavier Becerra prepared the official title and summary for the ballot initiative, which had been presented by abortion abolitionist Daniel Ehinger.
Ehinger’s proposal would ban abortion without exception, and those who intentionally kill the unborn at any stage of development would face first-degree murder charges.
“Eliminates a woman’s state constitutional privacy right to terminate a pregnancy, and to use certain birth control methods. Outlaws: abortion including cases of rape, incest, or to save the life of the woman; intentionally terminating a fertilized egg; most embryonic stem cell research, some fetal tissue research; and many in vitro fertilization procedures,” the summary reads.
“Women, medical professionals, researchers, and others, who violate these restrictions would be guilty of first-degree murder,” it outlines.
However, the California legislative analyst’s office also noted, “Assuming that provisions of the U.S. Constitution would prevent the initiative from taking effect, voter approval of this measure would have no impact on state and local finances.”
Ehinger must collect 585,407 valid signatures over the next six months in order for the initiative to qualify to be placed on the ballot. The deadline for submission to county elections officials is March 5, 2018.
“We received our circulating title to gather signatures and work to get abolishing abortion on the November 6th, 2018 ballot through a state ballot initiative that would amend our Constitution. Please pray for our efforts. JESUS!” Ehinger posted to social media following the announcement.
As previously reported, abortion abolitionists in two other states have sought to place similar initiatives on the ballot. However, in Ohio, the state attorney general rejected the petition in concluding that there were an insufficient number of valid signatures, and in Oklahoma, the state Supreme Court struck down the proposal as unconstitutional.
“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,” Russell Hunter of the Abolitionist Society of Norman stated following the Oklahoma decision in March 2016.
“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.”
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, whose duty it is to craft the title and summary for all ballot initiatives, is currently seeking the criminal prosecution of David Daleiden of the Center for Medical Progress for recording representatives of the abortion and contraceptive giant Planned Parenthood undercover. Planned Parenthood had donated to a number of Becerra’s political campaigns from 1998-2014.