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And There’s This: Tennessee Senate Passes Abortion Amendment

March 24, 2009

Liberadio! has details. In short, SJR127 passed the state Senate, and specifies that:

“nothing in Constitution of Tennessee secures or protects right to abortion or requires the funding of an abortion; states that the people retain the right through their elected state representatives and state senators to enact, amend, or repeal statutes regarding abortion, including, but not limited to, circumstances of pregnancy resulting from rape or incest or when necessary to save the life of the mother”

Supporters keep insisting that the bill does not make abortion illegal, while not addressing the fact that if this ultimately succeeds (there are several more steps for this Constitutional amendment), it makes room for the numerous restrictions often supported by anti-choice folks – such as waiting periods, forced ultrasounds, required “informed consent” scripts that are not medically accurate, and so on. It also makes room for an abortion ban in the event that national protections vanish.

Republican Sen. Diane Black sponsored the bill and calls it “getting the constitution back to neutral ground” but doesn’t address the potential restrictions or trigger law nature of the legislation. Aside from which, while not including exemptions for rape and incest is actually pretty logically consistent (we can argue about that another day), specifically pointing out that there is no guaranteed right to an abortion “when necessary to save the life of the mother” doesn’t feel very neutral to me.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. recover345 permalink
    March 24, 2009 8:59 am

    Thank you for posting it. I agree with you are saying that this is not “neutral” but seems to be a loophole. I appreciate this blog and your staying on top of our rights and issues. I see a lot of teens as a counselor who are dealing with pregnancy issues and decisions and it can be a difficult situation.

    Miracle 2 Soap

  2. March 24, 2009 12:45 pm

    State legislatures sneak this kind of stuff through. They need to be under constant surveilance.

  3. Elmer Gantry permalink
    April 4, 2009 6:22 am

    Johnson City Press Weekly Poll (Johnson City in Northeast Tennessee)

    “Should the state Constitution be amended to make it *tougher* to obtain an abortion in Tennessee?”

    Yes  —  16%
    No  —  81%
    Undecided  —  2%
    I Don’t Care  —  0%

    Subtotal Votes  —  6555 as of 07:30 a.m. April 4, 2009.


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